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VOL. 124 | NO. 118 | Thursday, June 18, 2009

Oppenheimer Memphis Office Closing

By Andy Meek

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About three months after New York-based investment firm Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. hired several former Stanford Group Co. financial advisers to open a Memphis office for Oppenheimer, the company is shutting it down.

Multiple sources have told The Daily News of Oppenheimer’s plan, which caps an effort that began with the collapse of the Stanford business empire in February in the wake of an investment scandal. Six Stanford advisers who worked in Memphis, including Tennessee state Sen. Paul Stanley, then were snapped up by Oppenheimer and used to start a new Memphis branch for that company.

No one from Oppenheimer could be reached to explain the reason for the closure.

Oppenheimer’s new Memphis office opened across the street from The Crescent Center, where Stanford formerly operated a Memphis investment brokerage office. Stanford’s office there was shuttered after regulators claimed the company was operating an $8 billion investment fraud related to the sale of certificates of deposit.

All of the former Stanford advisers who went to work for Oppenheimer – excluding Stanley – were later named in a lawsuit filed in April by the receiver now in charge of what’s left of Stanford’s operations. That lawsuit seeks to recapture millions of dollars in commissions and other incentives Stanford advisers made from the sale of Stanford CDs.

Those five Memphis advisers who went to work for Oppenheimer got $1.6 million in compensation the receiver wants to recover, according to court filings in Texas.

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RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 67 156 11,921
MORTGAGES 77 227 15,577
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 15 57 3,080
BUILDING PERMITS 222 606 28,832
BANKRUPTCIES 82 210 11,517
BUSINESS LICENSES 23 73 4,228
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 87 339 17,522
MARRIAGE LICENSES 18 61 3,625

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