Online Share Dealing Decision Reference 2022-0089

Case OutcomeRejected
Subject MatterOnline Share Dealing
Date11 March 2022
Finantial SectorInvestment
Conducts Complained OfFailure to inform of drop in value,Complaint handling (Consumer Protection Code) , Failure to process instructions, Failure to provide product/service information
Decision Ref:
Product / Service:
Online Share Dealing
Conduct(s) complained of:
Failure to inform of drop in value
Complaint handling (Consumer Protection Code)
Failure to provide product/service information
Failure to process instructions
The Complainant held an online Execution Only account with the Provider which provided
him with an online dealing service, facilitating him to trade in certain non-complex financial
instruments such as shares, across Irish, UK, European and US markets.
As part of his share portfolio, in October 2019 the Complainant held 538 shares with Share
Company A. This complaint concerns the Provider’s suggested failure to update or record
on its website a share price for Share Company A on 2 October 2019 that reflected its actual
value on that date, which then gave the Complainant the impression that his shares were
less valuable. The Complainant says that as a result, given the low value displayed, he did
not sell his shares and if he had, he would have realised an overall profit on the transaction.
The complaint also concerns the Provider’s suggested failure to deal with the Complainant’s
complaint appropriately.
The Complainants’ Case
The Complainant set out his complaint in the Complaint Form he completed to this Office
on 17 November 2019, as follows:
“In summary, I have an online account with [the Provider] that enables me to trade
in shares. It is an execution only account.
- 2 -
I held a portfolio of a number of different shares with [the Provider], one of which is
[Share Company A] (formerly known as [named redacted]). On 2 October 2019 I read
online that [Share Company A] had publicly announced a proposed acquisition of [an
online poker gaming company].
I expected this to have a positive impact on the [Share Company A] price. I logged
onto my [Provider] online account which stated the [Share Company A] share price
was €63.80, and marked in red. In fact, unbeknownst to me, the [Share Company A]
share price was at €100.70 at the time I logged on. Had I been informed of that fact
by [the Provider] I would have sold my [Share Company A] shares at that price,
thereby not only recovering previous losses on that aspect of my portfolio but
realising a profit also.
I did not learn of the spike in the [Share Company A] share price (reaching in excess
of €103 per share) until Sunday 6 October 2019 when having a conversation with a
friend of mine. I contacted [the Provider] about this on 7 October…In a telephone call
[Mr R.] (on behalf of [the Provider]) admitted that the information provided on my
online platform pertaining to the [Share Company A] share price had been incorrect.
Accordingly, [the Provider] has admitted the wrongdoing.
As the emails will show, [the Provider] have sought to excuse the wrongdoing on a
number of different bases, none of which are sustainable a fact which [the Provider]
has not refuted. [The Provider], in acknowledgement of [its] liability, did in fact make
a proposal by way of settlement. However, that misconceived proposal fell far short
of compensating me for my loss and in fact would have resulted in my crystallising a
[The Provider] failed to properly deal with my grievance and I was passed from one
person to the next. Ultimately, I was put in contact with [Mr S.], head of wealth
management, and…I set out in detail my complaint by email dated 17 October 2019.
[Mr S.] responded that day to say that he had forwarded the matter to the
compliance department…I sent a further email on 21 October 2019 asking [Mr S.]
when I might expect a response. [Mr S.] has not, to this day, replied to that email.
Indeed, I have received no contact from [the Provider] on this matter since 17 October
2019 something that I find inexplicable and disgraceful in the circumstances.
Given the manner in which [the Provider] has treated me I since opened a trading
account [elsewhere] and moved my entire portfolio, but for the [Share Company A]
shares, [there]. I sent, by email, a letter dated 25 October 2019 to [Mr S.] explaining
this to him. Again, [Mr S.] failed to respond to this letter at all.
For completeness, however, I did receive an email from [the Provider] acknowledging
the request to transfer and informing me on the completion of same. In short, owing
to the admitted wrongdoing of [the Provider] I was deprived of the opportunity to
sell my [Share Company A] at €100.70, a level at which they have not yet returned …

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