WASHINGTON Jan 9 Two brokerage units of Stifel
Financial Corp will pay more than $1 million to settle
civil charges alleging they sold risky, ill-suited
exchange-traded fund products to certain customers, Wall
Street's self-funded regulator said Thursday.
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority said Stifel,
Nicolaus & Co Inc and Century Securities Associates Inc will pay
fines of $550,000 and restitution of $475,000 to 65 harmed
customers without admitting or denying the charges.
The risky products at the heart of the case - leveraged and
inverse exchange-traded funds - have been in regulators' sights
now for several years.
Both FINRA and the Securities and Exchange Commission have
been looking more closely into these funds to see if they are
adequately transparent for retail investors and are not helping
to fuel market volatility.