Michael Martin Sanctioned by Arkansas Securities Regulators after Allegedly Targeting Senior Citizens to Invest in Equity-Indexed Annuities
Michael Hazen Martin was fined and suspended by the Arkansas Securities Department in connection with claims that Martin conducted fraudulent and deceptive business practices.
The Peiffer Wolf securities practice attorneys Jason Kane and Joe Peiffer are investigating the matter
Martin conducted free lunch and dinner seminars around Arkansas which targeted seniors and retirees, according to the Arkansas Securities Department. At these seminars, Martin described the securities industry as obsolete and exaggerated the benefits of investing in equity-indexed annuities (EIAs), which are highly complex insurance products tied to an equity stock index such as the S&P 500 and sold as investments, according to the Arkansas Securities Department.
Martin recommended that those attending his seminars should liquidate their securities and replace them with EIAs, according to the Arkansas Department of Securities. Martin stated repeatedly that investors could not lose money with an EIA and represented EIAs as the perfect product, however, Martin failed to adequately explain the complexity of EIAs or explain that EIAs are typically long-term investments carrying surrender charges and withdrawal fees, according to the Arkansas Securities Department.
Several senior citizen Arkansas investors who attended Martin’s seminars met with him individually after the seminar and purchased EIAs with money they obtained by liquidating securities, acting upon Martin’s advice at a seminar to do so, according to the Arkansas Securities Department. Martin did not obtain information about these investors’ individual financial circumstances, investment objectives, or risk tolerances prior to his recommendation and sale of EIAs to these investors, according to the Arkansas Securities Department.
The Arkansas Securities Department alleged that Martin made unsuitable recommendations to senior Arkansas investors to liquidate securities and use the proceeds to purchase EIAs. Martin also made certain untrue statements of material fact or omitted to state certain material facts to Arkansas investors regarding EIAs and in his recommendations of EIAs, according to the Arkansas Securities Department.
Martin consented to a $50,000 fine and a one-year suspension of his investment adviser representative registration in Arkansas without admitting or denying the Arkansas Securities Department’s findings.
The Peiffer Wolf attorneys often represent investors who lose money as a result of Ponzi schemes, investment fraud, or stockbroker misconduct. They are currently investigating the possibility of assisting victims with the recovery of their losses in connection with their investments with Michael Martin. They take most cases of this type on a contingency fee basis and advance the case costs, and only get paid for their fees and costs out of money they recover for their clients.
Investors who believe they lost money as a result of investing with Michael Martin may contact the securities lawyers at Peiffer Wolf, Jason Kane or Joe Peiffer, for a free, no-obligation evaluation of their recovery options, at 585-310-5140.