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"Massive Energy" Broker John Kai Barred After Undisclosed Private Securities Transactions, Outside Business & Discretion Investigation

John Kaleihiehie Kai, formerly of First Allied Securities' Hilo, Hawaii branch, and who once challenged potential clients to Google him before investing, has himself received a permanent bar from FINRA in connection to his firing from First Allied in April 2017.

According to First Allied, the firm terminated Kai for violating "numerous" firm policies, listing allegations of undisclosed private securities transactions and outside business activities, borrowing funds from a client, and exercising discretion in client brokerage accounts without approval.

Perhaps most egregious, First Allied found that Kai (CRD #2163244) received client funds under false pretenses in that Kai vowed to invest funds for a client, but instead failed to open "any apparent account" under the client's name.

A 2010 customer dispute, since settled, alleged that an account held with Kai "was unsuitably risky."

Kai's other business activities, as disclosed to FINRA, range from instructing at Hawaii Community College to director at Big Island Federal Credit Union and Housing Foundation to serving on the Hawaii Island Chamber of Commerce and involvement with AirBNB.

Kai also listed himself as a partner, owner, or proprietor of the real estate and investment companies Pinnacle Holdings, Inc.; Hilo Hub; and Pinnacle Investment Group, LLC. Pinnacle, for instance, is "not in good standing" with the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs after it failed to submit a 2017 annual filing.

It is quite a change of pace from comments Kai made in 2015 in West Hawaii Today regarding FINRA's BrokerCheck service, when he implored of clients, "I suggest that people, before they come see me, Google us. Google 'Pinnacle Investment Group,' Google 'John Kai' and see what you come up with. If you have any questions as it relates to what you found or any concerns, bring them to me when we get together."

In his Hilohub biography, Kai describes himself as "Husband, Dad, Entrepreneur, Massive Energy!" Kai previously hosted a morning financial stock market commentary show on Hilo's KPUA AM 670 radio station under the Pinnacle brand, which he additionally advertised on his Pinnacle Investment Group website, writing in his Blogger biography, "Listen to John on KPAU AM 670 6:53 am 8:53 am Each weekday morning."

Kai also owns a marketing/networking endeavor known as "The Kickass Realtor," which seeks subscriptions from realtors looking to network. Kai's website presently states, "The #KickassRealtor is on hold," in reference to a hashtag (#) for use on social media.

In 2010, previous employer Commonwealth Financial Network permitted Kai to resign after finding that his use of social media violated firm policy.

If you have invested with former First Allied Securities broker John Kaleihiehie Kai of Hilo, Hawaii, with Kai's other investment companies such as Pinnacle Investment Group, or with any financial adviser or representative whose undisclosed private securities transactions, outside businesses, or unauthorized use of discretion has proven harmful to your investments or interests, please call The Law Offices of Jonathan W. Evans & Associates at (800) 699-1881 for an investigation and consultation.

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