The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority says it has barred and suspended a broker fired by Wells Fargo over outside brokerage accounts.
Jacob Popek, who joined the financial services industry in 2017, became a registered securities representative with Wells Fargo Clearing Services in November 2018, according to a letter of acceptance, waiver and consent the industry’s self-regulator published last week. In May 2020, the company filed a Form U5 termination notice stating that it had discharged Popel the prior month after he “acknowledged providing inaccurate information to his manager and Wells Fargo ... regarding the status of a personal outside brokerage account,” according to Finra.
Finra concluded that between November 2018 and April 2020, Popek kept outside brokerage accounts without getting Wells’ written consent, thereby violating the self-regulator's rules, according to the letter of acceptance.
Popek allegedly told the firm in December 2018 that he maintained three such accounts at two other member firms, after which Wells told him to close the accounts, Finra says. Popek, however, kept the accounts for a year or more longer and made several trades in one of the accounts in 2019 and 2020, according to the letter of acceptance.
Moreover, Finra claims that Popek kept two more outside brokerage accounts from November 2018 until his termination without disclosing them to Wells.
And in December 2019, Popek allegedly falsely stated on a firm compliance questionnaire that he kept no outside brokerage accounts, while he in fact had thee, according to the self-regulator.
Last month, Popek consented to a three-month suspension and to pay a $2,500 fine without admitting or denying the findings, Finra says.
After his discharge from Wells Fargo in May 2020, Popek became registered with Country Capital Management Co. on Jan. 15, 2021 — but his registration there lasted all of four days, according to BrokerCheck. Popek has not registered with another firm sicne then, according to his BrokerCheck profile.
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