“Well, I don’t know if you’re familiar with the section of the Securities Act that states very clearly that the OSC can require the court to order restitution to a company or individual. So I would like to ask all of you when Mr Brown or his predecessor made the decision that they wouldn’t bother dealing with individuals, and on whose authority did the head of the OSC make that decision? As I’m aware, there has been no amendment to the Securities Act, has there? Can someone answer that question?” – Sandra Gibson, Investor, Ontario

“On the basis of our experience, an independent organization with the authority of law is needed to monitor the industry and order financial redress where investors are defrauded or victimized by corporate negligence. In other words, I would ask you to initiate changes to ensure that regulators fulfill their stated objective of protecting the interests of investors in this province.”

“Meanwhile, I scouted for other ways to obtain restitution. I mentioned my letter to Mr McGuinty. He referred me to the Ontario Securities Commission, as did the Ministry of Finance. The OSC referred me to the Investment Dealers Association. From the time I wrote to the OSC, in line with the advice from Queen’s Park, until the IDA hearing into what it referred to as “the matter,” three years and seven months had passed. I learned that a number of other investors had also complained against our financial adviser. I was surprised, therefore, when IDA concluded that he had been correctly supervised.” –

“The industry now has a self-reporting system, so claims of wrongdoing sometimes have to be reported to the very people who may be benefiting from the wrongdoing. This is unacceptable. If the complaint is serious and raised to a higher level, it can sometimes be passed along to an industry trade association, which is by the industry and for the industry, and in the end the client or the complaint gets not much satisfaction, in my experience.” –

I have three concerns, and the three concerns are this. The IDA receives complaints routinely. Those complaints deal with, “I lost money. My investment advice was bad. What do I do about it?” Well, the IDA routinely gives them a legal opinion — “You have no claim because of” — and provides the reasons why. I’ve got a problem with that. First of all, they are the industry representative. They don’t disclose that they’re the industry representative. They’re in conflict. Second, they’re not lawyers. It’s not a lawyer writing the letter, but it’s a legal conclusion. Third, they are discouraging the client. These are clients who then come to me, and I’ve got the letter from the IDA saying that they have a bad claim, and I then settle it with the broker for large money because it was a good claim.

– By their lack of involvement, the three main regulatory bodies — the OSC, the Investment Dealers Association and the Toronto Stock Exchange — have to be cast as non-heroes. As Durst asks: “Why do these bodies get so much funding when they are followers and not leaders? Why does one have to go the civil action route to get securities laws enforced?”

Rick Durst, Private Investor
CIBC, OSC among the ‘non-heroes’ in Danier case

It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on not understanding it.

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