The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) has ruled that an investment firm that agreed to a suspension in Alberta should also have its registration pulled in Ontario.
According to a decision released by the OSC on Friday, last July, Alberta-based Wells Asset Management System Inc. (WAMS) and Dale Richard Wells agreed to a suspension by the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) based on the findings of a compliance review by the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC).
That suspension took effect on Jan. 30 of this year. As a result, the firm was also automatically suspended in B.C., Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
OSC staff also sought to impose the suspension in Ontario as well, but the firm requested a hearing on the issue.
According to the OSC’s decision in the case, WAMS and Wells argued that they agreed to the suspension in Alberta to prevent possible investor losses, but that the findings of the BCSC compliance report haven’t been reviewed, and they asked the OSC to “conduct a full review.”
However, the OSC ruled that a hearing to consider a possible registration suspension “is not the appropriate forum to review the assessment made by ASC staff of the report and, ultimately, the actions taken by the registrant’s principal regulator.”
The commission also ruled that they should be suspended in Ontario too, saying, “In my view, allowing WAMS and Wells to continue to be registered in Ontario while its registration is suspended in Alberta and all other Canadian jurisdictions in which it was registered, would be objectionable and inconsistent with the OSC’s mandate.”