According to the Investment News, clients of David Lerner Associates Inc. holding shares in nontraded REITs created by Apple REIT Cos. Inc. received account statements at the end of last month in which the longtime value of the shares was shown as “not priced.”
For years, shares of the real estate investment trusts were listed at $11 on client account statements. The firm continued to list the same price after the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. in 2009 told broker-dealers to adjust prices on the investments more frequently.
Finra also prohibited broker-dealers from using information more than 18 months old to estimate the value of a nontraded REIT.
At the end of May, Finra filed a complaint against David Lerner, alleging that the firm was misleading investors and marketing unsuitable investment products to them.
Since 1992, David Lerner has recommended and sold nearly $6.8 billion in Apple REIT shares, according to Finra.
Client account statements also show the cost of investment in the Apple REITs, which is either $10.50 or $11 per share.
A broker-dealer switching a security’s value to “not priced” isn’t unheard of, but it is far from ordinary, attorneys said. Although some attorneys noted that such a change could be a bad harbinger for any security, another lawyer said that such a price change is a potential step in the right direction.
Finra’s complaint against David Lerner has renewed concerns among broker-dealers about the sales of illiquid investments such as nontraded REITs and private placements.
To determine whether you may be able to recover investment losses incurred as a result of your purchase of Apple REIT, please contact The White Law Group at 312-238-9650.
The White Law Group, LLC is a national securities fraud, securities arbitration, investor protection, and securities regulation/compliance law firm with offices in Chicago, Illinois and Boca Raton, Florida.
For more information on The White Law Group, please visit our website at http://www.whitesecuritieslaw.com.