FINRA Fines Merrill $1M For Dragging Ex-Brokers To Court

Law360, New York (January 25, 2012, 2:31 PM EST) -- The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority on Wednesday hit Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner & Smith Inc. with a $1 million fine, concluding Bank of America Corp.'s wealth management unit took 90 ex-stockbrokers to court over bonus disputes that should have been arbitrated.

The FINRA proceeding centers on a small fraction of some of the $2.8 billion in bonuses paid in the form of loans by the financial giant to around 5,000 Merrill Lynch brokers — called financial advisers by company — to keep them on board after...
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