Jeffrey L. Rittberger, a former broker with The Huntington Investment Company, has agreed to a $10,000 FINRA fine and a 45-day suspension from the industry relating to complaints that he placed customers in unsuitable investments.
According to the allegations detailed in the Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (“AWC”) entered into between Rittberger and FINRA, “While registered with Huntington, Rittberger participated in the recommendation of purchases of municipal unit investment trusts (UITs) totaling approximately $198,000 to five customers. Rittberger failed to conduct reasonable diligence regarding the UITs prior to participating in the recommendations and therefore did not have an understanding of the product’s potential risks and rewards. Accordingly, Rittberger did not have a reasonable basis to recommend the UITs to the customers.”
Rittberger’s BrokerCheck report states that “each of the customers complained to [Huntington] after the value of their municipal UITs declined. The firm resolved the complaints by either cancelling the customers’ trades or compensating them for realized losses.”
Rittberger was a registered representative with Huntington from January 2011 until April 2014, when he was terminated for violating firm policy, according to the AWC. He is not currently registered with any FINRA member firm.
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