Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Jory Capital's Cooney ditches securities field

Firm's client accounts transferred to MGI brokerage

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PATRICK Cooney may have been called onto the carpet by securities industry regulators for the last time.

That's because he's getting out of the business.

Late this week, his brokerage firm, Jory Capital, was suspended by the Manitoba Securities Commission and securities commissions in Saskatchewan, Alberta and B.C.

On Friday, it was confirmed that Jory's membership with the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) was immediately suspended.

That means Jory and its registered brokers were not able to transact business on behalf of its clients.

But as of Friday, Jory's clients' accounts have been transferred to MGI Securities.

Ed Belcewich, the Winnipeg branch manager of MGI, said, "All the remaining Jory clients and client assets have been transferred to MGI. It was a matter of public record that Jory was suspended. But those clients now have access to their accounts and can do transactions on their accounts again."

Warren Funt, IIROC's vice-president, Western Canada, said their main concern is the safety of clients' funds and that they have access to them.

He said IIROC is not aware of any of those funds being compromised.

Cooney and Jory Capital have had a lengthy history of running into compliance violations with IIROC, and the firm and its founder and CEO have been sanctioned and fined several times over the past several years.

Funt said Cooney and Jory still have outstanding fines totalling about $150,000.

Cooney maintains that throughout all of his challenges in complying with regulators, his clients' funds have never been at risk.

"We have never put our clients at risk, nor have we done anything against the public interest," he said. "All our issues with the regulators have been concerning documentation issues. No one has ever questioned our integrity in dealing with the capital market and our clients. To me, that is extremely important."

Jory Capital broker Harry Ong has moved to MGI with the Jory book of business.

Cooney said he will now re-invent the firm as an independent research firm. He said he was not able to detail what sort of operational model would be used.

"I'll be able to tell you that in 90 days," he said.

Cooney has cultivated somewhat of a contrarian reputation for many years often criticizing popular wisdom about market dynamics.

He said he intends to conduct independent research without having any conflicts of interest.

martin.cash@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 15, 2012 B6

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