Eric Howard Kunis of Woodbury New York a stockbroker formerly registered with Maxim Group LLC has been fined $2,500.00 and suspended for two months from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member in any capacity based upon findings that Kunis executed unsuitable trading in eleven Maxim Group LLC customer accounts. Letter of Acceptance Waiver and Consent No. 2016047630701 (Oct. 19, 2018).

According to the AWC, from February of 2012 to January of 2017, Kunis engaged in the unsuitable short-term trading of unit investment trusts – investment companies that offer a securities portfolio to investors through a one-time offering and terminate on a maturity date specified in advance. FINRA stated that the unit investment trusts recommended by Kunis are not typically designed for short-term trading given the hefty up-front sales charges that are often assessed to customers upon purchasing them.

Throughout the 2012 to 2017 timeframe, Kunis apparently advised customers to buy the unit investment trusts for their investment accounts and subsequently sell those investments before they had matured. Apparently, these recommendations were implemented in eleven customer accounts. The AWC stated that most of the unit investment trusts recommended by Kunis contained two year maturities, where customers were assessed sales charges ranging from approximately two to four percent. Despite the two year maturities and hefty charges, Kunis constantly advised customers to liquidate their unit investment trust holdings in less than twelve months from the time that the securities were purchased. Customers sold the investments recommended by Kunis after just one hundred sixty one days on average.

FINRA stated that customers suffered from unreasonable sales charges as a result of following the recommendations made by Kunis. Evidently, Kunis’ advice was also considered inappropriate given the cost and frequency that the transactions had been executed. FINRA ultimately found Kunis’ conduct violative of FINRA Rule 2010 and National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) Rule 2310.

FINRA Public Disclosure also confirms that on June 15, 2017, a customer initiated investment related complaint concerning Kunis’ activities was settled for $7,500.00 in damages supported by accusations that while Kunis was associated with Maxim Group LLC, unauthorized over-the-counter equities transactions were placed in the customer’s account.

Kunis’ registration with Maxim Group LLC has been terminated on July 26, 2018. Since July 24, 2018, he has been associated with Trident Partners Ltd. And since September 13, 1993, Kunis has been associated with nine different broker dealers, three of which have been expelled by securities regulators for violation of federal securities laws or are otherwise defunct.

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