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PI Financial, Hancock sued by Kelowna retiree

2023-05-30 20:45 ET - Street Wire

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by Mike Caswell

A retiree has filed a lawsuit in the Supreme Court of British Columbia against PI Financial Inc. and one of its employees, John Hancock, over losses in his account. He claims that Mr. Hancock put his money into overly risky securities, inflicting a loss of $1.5-million, or about half of his initial investment. For their part, PI and Mr. Hancock deny any wrongdoing, and say that the client had sought returns that were not achievable in a low-risk account.

The allegations are contained in a notice of claim filed at the Vancouver courthouse on April 27, 2023, by Kelowna resident Brian Radke. The suit identifies Mr. Radke, 60, as a business owner who was looking to sell his business in 2020. Also a plaintiff is a private entity that Mr. Radke controls, Snow Pine Ventures Inc.

The case stems from accounts that Mr. Radke opened at PI in 2020. According to the suit, he spoke with Mr. Hancock in April of that year to discuss his planned retirement. He says that he told Mr. Hancock that he was not an experienced investor and that he had a low risk tolerance, and that he was nervous to invest in the stock market.

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“Mr. Hancock again assured him that he was experienced with such portfolios, and that Mr. Radke could expect annual returns of 10 to 20 per cent, the suit states.” Based on those assurances, Mr. Radke says that he transferred $2.85-million for Mr. Hancock to manage…Moreover, Mr. Radke was seeking a return of 15 to 20 per cent, which would not have been achievable through low-risk securities…As Mr. Radke's investments began to produce returns, he became more aggressive with his investment goals, the response states. On June 25, 2021, Mr. Radke updated his account documents to reflect his desire for higher risks. This update set the account objectives to 60 per cent in high-risk securities and 40 per cent in medium-risk investments, according to the response."

Those are pretty high expectations...almost like winning the lottery (except the purchasers of lottery tickets only risk a buck or two).

Lotsa luck with the lawsuit, Mr. Radke.

Posted by halcrow at 2023-05-30 23:01