12 Brokerages, 1 Bank Fined
Dec. 16, 1997
WASHINGTON (AP) _ Securities and bank regulators censured and fined 21 brokerage firms _ including several major ones _ and a bank a total of $325,000 for allegedly filing late disclosure documents for municipal bond sales.
In agreeing to pay the fines, the brokerages neither admitted nor denied wrongdoing. Seven of them were fined $25,000 each; the other firms and the bank, Commerce Bank NA, were fined $10,000.
The action was taken Tuesday by NASD Regulation, the self-policing arm of the National Association of Securities Dealers, and the U.S. Comptroller of the Currency, which regulates nationally chartered banks. It was announced by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
``Today's enforcement actions are a wake-up call to municipal securities underwriters,'' SEC Chairman Arthur Levitt Jr. said in a statement. ``The lapses here are particularly unfortunate because they are so widespread, involving every category of municipal underwriter, from national and regional securities firms to a bank.''
The brokerages include six firms with officials who are members of the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board, a self-regulatory body subject to the SEC's oversight. They are First Union Capital Markets Corp.; Goldman Sachs & Co.; J.P. Morgan Securities Inc.; PaineWebber Inc.; Piper Jaffray Inc., and Stone & Youngberg LLC.
The other firms fined are Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc.; First of America Securities Inc.; First Southwest Co.; Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Inc.; Miller, Johnson & Kuehn Inc.; Morgan, Keegan & Co. Inc.; Morgan Stanley & Co. Inc.; Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.; PNC Capital Markets Inc.; Prudential Securities Inc.; Raymond James and Associates; Seattle-Northwest Securities Corp.; Smith Barney Inc.; SunTrust Capital Markets Inc., and Sutro & Co. Inc.