Articles Posted in Robinhood

On September 1, 2021, Robinhood ($Hood) filed its first amendment to its Form S-1 Registration Statement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”).

The public filing, which amends the registration statement that Robinhood filed in connection with its July 2021 initial public offering (IPO), discloses that the SEC’s Division of Examinations and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) have submitted inquires to Robinhood related to whether any employee executed trades in certain securities, including GameStop Corp. and AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc., before the public announcement that Robinhood would restrict trading in those securities on January 28, 2021.

On Thursday, January 28, 2021, Robinhood designated specific stocks “position closing only,” restricting its customers from purchasing additional shares in those stocks.  The targeted stocks included GameStop (NYSE: GME), AMC (NYSE: AMC), Blackberry (NYSE: BB), Nokia (NYSE: NOK), Koss Corporation (NYSE: KOSS), and Express, Inc. (NYSE: EXPR).

On June 30, 2021, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) announced that it ordered Robinhood Financial LLC to pay approximately $70 million for systemic supervisory failures and significant harm suffered by millions of customers.  The sanctions included an order to pay a $57 million fine and $12.6 million in restitution, plus interest, to thousands of harmed customers.  According to the FINRA press release, the sanctions represent the largest financial penalty ever ordered by FINRA and reflect the scope and seriousness of the violations.

Robinhood agreed to the sanctions to settle broad regulatory allegations that the firm misled customers, approved ineligible traders for risky strategies, and did not supervise technology that failed and locked millions out of trading.

In determining the appropriate sanctions, FINRA stated that it “considered the widespread and significant harm suffered by customers, including millions of customers who received false or misleading information from the firm, millions of customers affected by the firm’s systems outages in March 2020, and thousands of customers the firm approved to trade options even when it was not appropriate for the customers to do so.”

A 26-year-old truck driver from Connecticut, represented by Iorio Altamirano LLP, filed a securities arbitration claim alleging that Robinhood’s decision to halt the purchase of securities by retail investors caused the share prices of publicly traded companies that he held to fall, resulting in losses.

The claim stems from Robinhood’s January 28, 2021 decision to designate specific stocks as “position closing only,” meaning that customers could not purchase additional shares in those stocks.  The targeted stocks included GameStop (NYSE: GME), AMC (NYSE: AMC), Blackberry (NYSE: BB), Nokia (NYSE: NOK), Koss Corporation (NYSE: KOSS), and Express, Inc. (NYSE: EXPR).

Robinhood was joined by other online brokers, including TD Ameritrade, Charles Schwab & Co, Inc, Interactive Brokers, LLC, Webull Financial, LLC, E*Trade Securities LLC, who all implemented trading restrictions on targeted securities.  These online brokerage firms, including Robinhood, intentionally deprived their customers, without notice, of the ability to use their service in order to slow the growth of the targeted “meme stock” securities.

On Thursday, January 28, 2021, Robinhood designated specific stocks “position closing only,” meaning that customers could not purchase additional shares in those stocks.  The targeted stocks included GameStop (NYSE: GME), AMC (NYSE: AMC), Blackberry (NYSE: BB), Nokia (NYSE: NOK), Koss Corporation (NYSE: KOSS), and Express, Inc. (NYSE: EXPR).

Robinhood was joined by other online brokers, including TD Ameritrade, Charles Schwab & Co, Inc, Interactive Brokers, LLC, Webull Financial, LLC, E*Trade Securities LLC, who all implemented trading restrictions on targeted securities.  These online brokerage firms, including Robinhood, intentionally deprived their customers, without notice, of the ability to use their service in order to slow the growth of the targeted “meme stock” securities.

As the trading restrictions were put into place by the online brokerage firms, including Robinhood, retail investors watched helplessly as the value of their positions plummeted with no potential to remediate the positions given the wrongful sale pressure initiated by Robinhood and others.

Here is how you can file a claim to recover losses suffered from trading restrictions placed on GameStop, AMC, Blackberry, Nokia, and other stocks.

On February 12, 2021, in a letter addressed to Senator Elizabeth Warren, Robinhood Financial, LLC confirmed twenty-four (24) pending securities arbitrations.

Robinhood’s letter was written in response to an inquiry sent by Senator Warren on February 2, 2021, as to why Robinhood “abruptly changed the rules” for retail investors by restricting the purchase of certain securities.

Earlier this week, FINRA released its 2021 Report on Risk Monitoring and Examination Activities. The Report replaced two of FINRA’s prior publications – FINRA’s Examination Findings and Observations Report and FINRA’s Risk Monitoring and Examination Priorities Letter. The Report provided an in-depth look at FINRA’s priorities, recommended best practices for broker-dealer members, and regulatory findings. The Report reiterated FINRA’s commitment to protecting senior and vulnerable investors and highlighted several important areas of interest that directly affect retail investors, including:

  • Regulation Best Interest (Reg BI)
  • Communications with the Public

Iorio Altamirano LLP is investigating claims of market manipulation and breach of contract after Robinhood Markets, Webull Financial LLC, T.D. Ameritrade, Charles Schwab, E*Trade Financial Corp., Interactive Brokers Group, and other online brokerage platforms halted the ability of its clients to purchase GameStop (NYSE: GME), AMC (NYSE: AMC), Novavax, Inc. (NASDAQ: NVAX), Express (NYSE: EXPR), Blackberry (NYSE: BB), Bed Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ: BBBY), Koss Corp. (NASDAQ: KOSS) and Nokia (NYSE: NOK) stock on January 28, 2021.

According to reports, after the popular online brokerage firms implemented the trading restrictions, GameStop ($GME) dropped 44%, and AMC ($AMC) lost 57%. The trading restrictions, which appear to have sent the share prices of targeted companies plunging, set off a firestorm of criticism, including Congress members.

New York Attorney General Letitia James released the following statement on January 28, 2021:  “We are aware of concerns raised regarding activity on the Robinhood app, including trading related to the GameStop stock. We are reviewing this matter.”

Iorio Altamirano LLP is investigating claims of market manipulation and breach of contract after Robinhood Markets, T.D. Ameritrade, Charles Schwab, and other brokerage firms halted the ability of its clients to purchase GameStop ($GME), AMC ($AMC), Blackberry ($BB), and Nokia ($NOK) stock.

To read our most recent blog post on this investigation, please click here.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, which regulates brokerage firms like Robinhood, T.D. Ameritrade, and Charles Schwab, requires that broker-dealers make every effort to execute a marketable customer order that it receives fully and promptly.

Contact Information