According to a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Order Accepting Offer of Settlement against Merid Amde, Amde was accused of executing approximately 55 discretionary transactions in a customer account without obtaining prior written authorization from the client and without having the accounts accepted as discretionary accounts by his employing firm. The customer was a 54 year-old elementary school teacher who inherited a modest sum after the death of her parents. She then deposited the money in an account run by Amde, who was also her parents’ broker. Amde then became registered with Wunderlich Securities in September 2008 and transferred the client accounts to Wunderlich. From September 2008 until May 2011, Amde allegedly executed 145 trades in the customer’s account. He then inaccurately marked the order tickets as unsolicited orders for 36 of the 145 trades. He did this allegedly in order to purchase various unit investment trusts and low-priced equities such as the First Trust India Growth Portfolio, a risky unit investment trust with holdings exclusively in India and Dryships, Inc., a Greek company offering offshore drilling services. This was against securities rules and regulations. For this, Amde was fined $20,000 and suspended from the industry for three months.
According to his online FINRA BrokerCheck report, Amde was associated with Investors Center, Vanderbilt Securities, First of Michigan Corp, The Ohio Company, Roney & Co., Raymond James, Ferris, Baker Watts Inc. and Wunderlich Securities in Birmingham, Michigan from September 2008 until August 2013. He is currently registered with LM Kohn & Co. in Troy, Michigan and has been since September 2013. He has three customer disputes against him.