Core Investor Issues with UBS YES Claims: The Four Areas of Focus with Our Ongoing Analysis and Investigation of the UBS YES Program

By Montgomery G. Griffin and Theodore S. Avery

It has been widely reported (including by the Wall Street Journal) that some investors around the United States—including some seeking low-risk, steady yields—incurred losses in the UBS Yield Enhancement Strategy program.  The program involved, among other things, the use of options transactions, which included added costs due to options bid-ask spreads and fee-based advisory fees. Our work on behalf of aggrieved investors since 1996 has often found that, when options transactions are made, retail customers do not understand the impact that option bid-ask spreads have on an account’s prospects for success.  

The ongoing investigation of the Law Offices of Montgomery G. Griffin into the UBS YES program is focused on the following four factors:

  1. Whether the UBS YES program was unsuitable for investors, with special focus on whether certain investor accounts were unsuitably leveraged with excessive amounts of borrowed funds
  2. Whether UBS financial advisors fully and fairly disclosed all material risks associated with investing in the UBS YES program when making oral sales presentations to their customers; 
  3. Whether UBS fully and fairly disclosed all costs associated with investing in the YES program when making oral sales presentations to their customers; and
  4. Whether the options trading utilized by UBS as part of the YES program was consistent with the strategy disseminated in writing to UBS clients, including as presented by UBS via the use of certain slide decks.    

Monty Griffin served as a financial advisor for UBS’ predecessor firm, PaineWebber, during the period of 1990-1995.  Since 1996, Monty has been prosecuting arbitration claims for investors against UBS Financial Services. His experiences as a former financial advisor are invaluable to him and his team when representing aggrieved investors.  Read more about 3 Things Monty Learned at UBS That Help Him and His Team to Better Analyze Investor Claims Related to Yield Enhancement Programs, Including UBS YES.  

If you were an investor in the UBS YES program and suspect that (a) it may have been an inappropriate strategy for you, or (b) you did not sufficiently understand the risks and/or costs involved, Contact Us for a free consultation.