News Releases

Apr 3

Forex Trader Touts 'Recession-Proof'Haven in Markets Roiled By COVID-19

Texas Securities Commissioner Travis J. Iles took emergency action on April 3 to stop the offering of a purported foreign currency trader promising a “safe haven” investment in a time when world markets are roiled by the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the Emergency Cease and Desist Order, Florida...
Apr 2

LendingClub Fined $400,000 for Unregistered Sales in Texas

LendingClub Corp., a national online lending marketplace, has been fined $400,000 for the unregistered sales of loans during an almost five-year period. Texas Securities Commissioner Travis J. Iles April 1 entered a Consent Order that reprimanded and fined LendingClub while also granting its...
Mar 31

Administrative Actions Report Jan-Mar 2020

The following are summaries of administrative enforcement actions the Texas State Securities Board took from Jan. 1 through March 31, 2020. Next Financial Group: Fine, Refunds Next Financial Group Inc. of Houston agreed to refund $500,000 to customers of a former Texas agent who for five years moved...
Mar 26

Investor Alert: Protecting Your Financial Health in the Pandemic Era

The COVID-19 pandemic has roiled securities markets in ways we have never experienced and is making financial decisions vastly more difficult than usual. We want to assure Texans that our primary focus remains on the protection of retail investors, and we are actively taking steps to protect the...
Mar 23

Investing In the Unknown

Amid the growing COVID-19 pandemic and careening markets in everything from stocks and bonds to oil, it can seem impossible to focus on the long view in investing. Impossible, even, to focus on anything but the next hour or next day. We don't know the future of the markets any more than the full...
Feb 26

Philly Special: Austin Investors' Funds Flowing to Besieged Pennsylvania Loan Company

Texas Securities Commissioner Travis J. Iles on Feb. 25 ordered Austin insurance agent Gary N. Beasley to stop offering promissory notes tied to a Philadelphia, Pa. company that has been sanctioned by two states and sued for predatory lending to small businesses. According to the Emergency Cease and...
Feb 21

Oil Company Pays $20,000 Fine, Will Make $1.5 Million Refund Offer to Investors

Woodland Resources LLC, the oil and gas company once led by a Fort Worth oilman with a history of regulatory sanctions and running companies into bankruptcy, paid a $20,000 fine to the state and will offer to refund $1.49 million to investors in two of its drilling projects. Under the terms of an...
Feb 20

Austin Insurance Agent Indicted for Alleged $9 Million Fraud on Elderly

Brett Pittsenbargar, an Austin insurance agent who allegedly sold $9.3 million in fraudulent investments, was arrested Feb. 19 to face first-degree felony charges of securities fraud, money laundering, and theft. A Travis County grand jury's Feb. 4 indictment of Pittsenbargar was made public when he...
Feb 13

Next Financial to Refund $500,000 to Customers, Pay $100,000 Fine

Next Financial Group Inc. of Houston agreed to refund $500,000 to customers of a former Texas agent who for five years moved clients in and out of high-cost mutual funds to generate commissions. Next Financial Group also paid a $100,000 fine to the State of Texas for failing to properly supervise...
Feb 5

Enforcement Report for 2019: $2.6 Million Paid to Investors, $575,000 in Fines to State

In 2019, the Texas State Securities Board took enforcement actions that resulted in the repayment of $2.58 million to investors and $575,000 in fines paid to the State of Texas. The funds returned to investors came through administrative orders, a civil court forfeiture order, and rescission offers...