PFGBest missing $220MM in client funds, founder attempts suicide.
Attempts? Some people can't do anything right.
Regulators seized operations of the Chicago futures brokerage PFGBest on Monday (July 9, 2012) as they investigate more than $200 million in customer funds that may be missing.
The action occurred hours after the firm’s chairman, Russell Wasendorf Sr., tried to kill himself outside the firm’s headquarters in Cedar Falls, Iowa, said a source close to the company. The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier said Wasendorf, 64, was taken to University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics in Iowa City, where he was listed in critical condition.
The National Futures Association, which has regulatory power over the industry’s brokerages, said that while the firm asserted it had $225 million in an account with U.S. Bank, a review showed that only $5 million was on deposit.
The money was part of $400 million in customer funds the firm was required to keep in segregated accounts, the NFA said.
PFGBest told customers their funds had been frozen and clients would be allowed to liquidate open trading positions, but would not be able to withdraw funds or make new trades until further notice.