Merrill Lynch recently agreed to pay a $2.5 million fine in Massachusetts to settle charges that it failed to follow its own compliance rules.
Secretary of the Commonwealth William Galvin accused Merrill, Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith of failing to supervise employees properly when the company made two presentations in January 2013 to financial advisers and others in Boston before properly vetting the material with its compliance department.
According to the State, the presentations were aimed at helping financial advisers increase their business and manage services provided to clients. One section discussed transferring client assets from commission-based brokerage accounts to fiduciary fee-based accounts but failed to include language about clients’ suitability for such switches.
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