George Hartzman's complaint to the North Carolina Securities Division concerns alleged misbehavior by his employer, Wells Fargo, and "and other firms doing or that did the same," which is to say pretty much the whole TBTF industry.
Hartzman works for Wells Fargo Advisors, where he arrived with the acquisition of Wachovia Securities. He also teaches continuing education classes for CPAs, including a unit on ethics, and is visible around town as a blogger and frequent speaker from the floor at City Council and other meetings.
Hartzman is sharing his story far and wide. I've contacted Wells Fargo Advisors and the NCSD for comment.
Hartzman claims that brokers at Wells Fargo and/or Wachovia were required to create financial plans for well-to-do customers in order to qualify for a bonus. He says the projected returns in these plans could be presented without showing investment costs that would reduce those returns substantially over time, and that in certain cases that omission was in violation of law, including Sarbanes-Oxley. "If Investment costs are not included in Envision investment plans, the proposals are inaccurate and misleading," he told the Securities Division.
His other issue involves the secret loan program to big banks from the Fed. Hartzman contends that senior execs and auditors who knew about these loans and yet allowed brokers at their firms to give financial advice without sharing that knowledge were in violation of the law, too.
Hartzman seems to be cognizant of the risks he is taking by going public with these allegations against the company that signs his paycheck. Whether or not his charges prove to carry legal weight, he's put himself in potential jeopardy for what he believes is right.