FINRA boots ex-Wells Fargo broker for alleged churning in elderly customer's accounts
A former Wells Fargo adviser was kicked out of the industry last week for alleged excessive trading in the brokerage accounts of a 93-year-old customer, according to a FINRA disciplinary filing.
Matthew Maczko, a broker with Wells Fargo Advisors in Oak Brook, Illinois, effectively controlled the customer's four accounts, which had an average aggregate value of $3 million, FINRA claimed.
The regulator rebuked Maczko for elevated levels of trading, which generated more than $582,000 in commissions, $84,270 in fees and approximately $397,000 in trading losses. The trading activity was unsuitable given the customer's age, risk tolerance and income needs, FINRA pointed out.
Maczko allegedly effected over 2,800 transactions in the four accounts from January 2009 to April 2016.
Maczko also lied to FINRA, saying during testimony that he had not spoken to two other senior customers after his termination from Wells Fargo, when in fact he had spoken with them several times, according to FINRA.
The broker was terminated after a series of unauthorized transactions involving the accounts of customers of both BBVA and its affiliate bank, FINRA claimed.February 15
The regulator rebuked the broker for excessive trading that generated more than $666,000 in commissions and fees and resulted in $397,000 in losses.February 13
FINRA chided the rep for following through on trading instructions received via email from bank employees without confirming the transactions with the customers.February 7
Maczko could not be reached for comment. His attorney, Daniel Donovan of Baltimore law firm Donovan & Rainie, did not return a phone message. In his settlement with FINRA, Maczko neither admitted nor denied the charges but consented to an entry of FINRA's findings.
Maczko worked for Wells Fargo Advisors from May 2009 to September 2016, when he was discharged, according to BrokerCheck records. He had previously worked for Wachovia Securities and Paine Webber.
Helen Bow, a spokeswoman for Wells Fargo, declined to comment on the matter.
Maczko is the third bank rep to be barred this year. Chaz Thomas Partosan, a former JPMorgan employee, was expelled last month for allegedly stealing $1,002 from bank customers by illicitly using their debit cards. David Jeremy Welty, a former personal banker registered with Wells Fargo Advisors, was also banished last month for allegedly stealing $8,700 from an account he opened at the bank for a memorial fund.