George C. Merhoff, a Cetera Advisors broker in Klamath Falls, Oregon, allegedly recommended numerous oil and gas and energy investments which were high-risk and illiquid. These included Linn Energy, Pengrowth Energy, and Amerigas Partners. Merhoff also allegedly recommended illiquid alternative investments including Cypress Income Funds and ICON 12, when he was registered with Pacific West Securities. Merhoff also allegedly made a number of unsuitable investment recommendations to a client, and he and Cetera had previously been the subject of of a regulatory action by the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation, which alleged that Merhoff inappropriately concentrated his clients’ investments in oil and energy stocks. Oil and gas and energy investments tend to be risky and illiquid ones, that are not suitable for all investors, since the price of oil and significantly declined. A broker must take into account a customer’s age, net worth, investment objectives and risk, as well as sophistication. If he does not, his brokerage firm may be responsible for losses on a contingency fee basis.
According to public record, Merhoff was registered with AAG Securities in Cincinnati, Ohio from September 1997 until March 1998, and Pacific West Securities in Klamath Falls, Oregon from June 1998 until February 2012. He is currently registered with Cetera Advisors in Klamath Falls and Monroe, Oregon, and has been since February 2012. He has two criminal final dispositions against him and has 14 customer disputes against him, 10 of which are currently pending. Please call our Chicago and Barrington, Illinois-based securities law firm at 312-332-4200 for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation with one of our attorneys. We take cases on a contingency fee basis only.
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