A financial broker who was sued six years ago by “Seinfeld” actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus is under investigation for lying on registration forms submitted to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, according to a regulatory disclosure.
Bambi Holzer, a Beverly Hills, California-based broker known both for her frequent television appearances and the dozens of complaints against her by one-time clients, was informed on July 18 about the investigation, according to FINRA’s website.
FINRA, the industry body that regulates brokers, initiated the investigation, according to the disclosure. Holzer did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Former clients of Holzer have lodged as many as 50 complaints against her over the past decade, and some of the ex-clients have won more than a total of $11 million in fines and compensatory judgments against her, her broker registration shows.
Hollywood producer Ken Kragen sued Holzer and won after she convinced him to put his funds into what prosecutors charged was an oil-and-gas Ponzi scheme and into an insurance annuity from which his money could not be extracted until he died. Louis-Dreyfus also sued Holzer after the broker convinced her to put money in the same type of insurance annuity.
“She made you feel ‘Oh, I’ve finally found what people are doing with their money,’” Kragen said in an interview with Reuters.
Kragen, who produced the fund-raising song and album “We Are The World,” said Holzer also gave the Kragens gifts, including fancy luggage, an espresso maker and a finely made polished wood box.
“The trappings were all there of this enormously successful lady,” he said.
The investigation does not mean Holzer has been accused of a violation, only that it is possible FINRA will file formal charges. If charges are filed, Holzer will have the opportunity to rebut them.
Holzer is the chairman of the Wealth & Income Management Group, headquartered in Beverly Hills. Her biography on the firm’s website says the group offers financial planning services to individual clients and also “consults to corporations.” The biography says she has appeared on NBC, CNN, CNBC, Fox and Bloomberg TV.
According to her registration record, she is licensed to sell financial products to clients through Newport Coast Securities, a firm based in New York.
Newport’s chief executive officer, Donald A. Wojnowski Jr., said Holzer was an independent contractor with his firm. When asked whether she would continue her work for Newport, Wojnowski declined to comment.
A spokeswoman for Louis-Dreyfus did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Louis-Dreyfus and Holzer eventually settled for an undisclosed amount.