Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

First Union to Pay $300,000 Fine

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

First Union to Pay $300,000 Fine

Article excerpt

First Union Corp. has agreed to pay Florida securities

regulators a $300,000 fine for failing to properly register some

of its branch offices in Florida to sell securities.

First Union also agreed to pay for an independent dispute

arbitrator to handle brokerage customer complaints.

The fines stem from violations that occurred as deregulation

allowed banks to start selling securities from their lobbies.

The new rules required banks to register their brokerage units,

brokers and offices with Florida regulators.

First Union did the first two, but not the third.

The company failed to register 152 branches, including one in

Jacksonville Beach, said Bill Reilly, financial administrator of

the Comptroller's Division of Securities.

The banking company, which has strenuously denied any

wrongdoing in the past, said it was glad the whole thing is

over.

"First Union Brokerage Services is committed to full compliance

with all of the rules and regulations, and First Union is

pleased that this matter has been resolved," said Allison Lash,

a company spokeswoman.

First Union also agreed to limit expansion of its brokerage

unit in Florida for six months. The company has almost 100

applications pending to register branches to sell securities,

Reilly said. …

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