Erez Law Investigating Claims Involving Former Stifel, Nicolaus Broker Donald L. Bratten

Erez Law is investigating claims regarding Donald L. Bratten (CRD #1904756, North Platte, Nebraska). Bratten recently submitted an AWC in which he was assessed a deferred fine of $10,000 and suspended from association with any FINRA member in any capacity for four months. See FINRA Case #2013037765701. The suspension is in effect from November 17, 2014, through March 16, 2015. Bratten was associated with Stifel, Nicolaus & Co., Inc., from January 2013 until his termination in August 2013. The Form U5 filed by Stifel, Nicolaus with FINRA to terminate Bratten’s registration states that Bratten was terminated for “violation of firm policies and industry rules, including failing to disclose outside business activities and soliciting investments outside of the firm.” Prior to Stifel, Nicolaus, Bratten was registered with Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC, from January 2008 to January 2013.

Bratten consented to the sanctions and to the entry of findings that he participated in a private securities transaction without providing prior written notice to or obtaining approval from his member firm. FINRA found that Bratten solicited two firm customers to invest in a company, where he served as the chief financial officer (CFO), started by his son and another individual, without his firm’s knowledge or approval. Bratten also allegedly facilitated a private securities transaction away from the firm by causing one of the customers to transfer $220,325 from her Stifel, Nicolaus account to her bank account to purchase shares of the company. FINRA further found that Bratten participated in two outside business activities without providing prior written notice to the firm. In particular, Bratten became a salesperson for a company that markets anti-wrinkle cream in addition to his involvement with his son’s company. Bratten failed to disclose his involvement in either of the activities to his firm, according to FINRA. In entering into the AWC, Baldinger neither admitted nor denied FINRA’s findings.

Pursuant to FINRA Rules, member firms are responsible for supervising a broker’s activities during the time the broker is registered with the firm. Therefore, Stifel, Nicolaus or Wells Fargo Advisors may be liable for investment or other losses suffered by Bratten’s customers during the time Bratten was registered with the firm.

If you were a client of Bratten, Stifel, Nicolaus, or Wells Fargo Advisors, and have suffered investment losses or financial irregularities, please contact Erez Law to explore your legal options. Erez Law is a nationally recognized law firm representing individuals, trusts, corporations and institutions in claims against brokerage firms, banks and insurance companies. To learn more, please call us at 888-840-1571 or complete our “contact form.”

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Author: Jeffrey Erez

The founder of Erez Law, Jeffrey Erez, focuses exclusively on securities arbitration and litigation. Mr. Erez passionately believes in representing aggrieved investors and obtaining justice for his clients through litigation.