CFTC Securities Headlines: Goldman Sachs Fined For Inadequate Broker Supervision in $118M Fraud, Firms Named in Precious Metal Scam, & Defendants to Pay $1.8M Over Off-Exchange Foreign Currency Scheme

Goldman Sachs Fined$1.5 Inadequate Supervision in $118M Fraud
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission says that Goldman Sachs (GS) must pay $1.5M because it did not properly supervise trader Matthew Marshall Taylor, who allegedly got around internal systems to manually make fabricated trades that went straight to the financial firms’ records and books and not the exchange. Taylor is accused of defrauding the bank, which lost about $118.4M.

The agency says that Goldman failed to make sure that its risk management, supervision, and compliance programs were in alignment with its duties to diligently oversee its business as a registrant of the Commission. However, CFTC commissioner Bart Chilton has criticized the $1.5M fine, describing it as a wrist slap.

CFTC Names Firms and Individuals in Precious Metal Scam The Commission has filed a civil injunctive enforcement action against a number of firms, including Hunter Wise Credit, LLC, Lloyds Commodities Credit Company, Hard Asset Lending Group, Blackstone Metals Group, LLC, CD Hopkins Financial, Newbridge Alliance Inc., Harold Edward Martin Jr., United States Capital Trust, LLC, as well as related entities, and Fred Jager, Frank Gaudino, James Burbage, Chadewick Hopkins, Baris Keser, David A. Moore, and John King. They are accused of fraudulently marketing off-exchange commodity contracts that were illegal. Also, Hunter Wise Commodities, which allegedly orchestrated the fraud, is accused of having gotten least $46M in client funds since July of last year.

The defendants allegedly claimed that they were selling physical metals to retail clients in retail commodity transactions and that they would arrange loans for the balance of the purchase price. Customers were supposed to make down payments at 25% of the complete buying price for certain quantities of metal, which were to be placed in a safe depository. The CFTC contends, however, says that not only were certain statements found in the investment contract untrue, but also the transactions were merely paper transactions with no actual metals involved.

Defendants to Pay $1.8M in Off-Exchange Foreign Currency Scheme
Following a CFTC anti-fraud enforcement action, a permanent injunction order and default judgment has been issued against Forex Capital Trading Partners, Inc., Forex Capital Trading Group Inc., and Highland Stone Capital Management, LLC requiring that they pay a penalty of over $1.3M and disgorge $450,764 to benefit clients who were defrauded. The Commission says that the three firms made fraudulent solicitations to 106 clients that invested over $2.8M in forex trading.

These solicitations were allegedly made with false claims that they were engaging in this type of trading had been profitable for several years, including a falsely reported 51.94% customer gain in 2010, which was a year when the investors actually lost over 1.2M. In fact, says the Commission, customers actually lost over 93% of total invested principal via the defendants’ customer trading.

CFTC Press Room

More Blog Posts:
CFTC Commissioner Proposes Plan to Give Futures Customers SIPC-Like Protections, Stockbroker Fraud Blog, August 14, 2012

CFTC Files Texas Securities Fraud Against TC Credit Services and its Houston Owner Over $1.4M Commodity Pool Scam, Stockbroker Fraud Blog, July 17, 2012
SEC and CFTC Say They Found Out About JPMorgan’s $2B Trading Loss Through Media, Stockbroker Fraud Blog, May 31, 2012
If you believe you may have been the victim of securities fraud, please contact our stockbroker fraud lawyers today.