Simon has been working for many years and has saved a substantial amount of money which he wishes to invest. In addition, he has recently inherited a large sum of money from his father who has just died. The total amount Simon has to invest is $950,000.
Simon is not an expert in investment matters but does keep up with what is happening in business and finance. In the past year, he has been following the progress of two companies in the manufacturing and technology areas. Both companies have been recently listed on the stock exchange and their share value has risen very quickly.
A friend refers Simon to Martin, a financial adviser running his own business.
An appointment is subsequently made and Simon attends the registered office of Martin and meets with Martin. Simon tells Martin of the companies he is interested to invest in and Martin suggests that Simon should do nothing until Martin has had the opportunity of making some enquiries regarding their performance and history. Simon agrees and adds that he has been following the two companies himself for some time and that while he is not an expert in the area, they seem to be performing quite well and he is very interested in investing in them. Martin mentions a number of other investments that should prove very rewarding to Simon and asks Simon to think about whether he would be interested in these other companies.
Shortly after this meeting, Simon and Martin meet again in Martin’s office. Martin advises that the companies Simon mentioned are doing very well and seem to have a very solid balance sheet. He says their assets far outweigh their liabilities and their growth plan is also a very solid one.
Simon says that based on what he has been told and of what he knows about the two companies, he is prepared to invest one third of his money in these two companies. Both parties also agree that investments will be made in some of the companies mentioned by Martin in the first meeting between them. An amount of $350,000 is accordingly invested in the two companies which Simon has been following in the last 12 months. The rest is invested in three companies which were mentioned by Martin in the first meeting.
Some months after the investments for Simon are made, all of the companies in which an investment has been made have dropped substantially and are worth half of the amounts invested in them with a combined value of only $475,000. Simon later establishes that Martin’s research into the all of the companies invested in, has been very general and if Martin had done his research professionally, Martin would have discovered that the companies should not have been invested in, and that investments should have been made in other better performing companies on behalf of Simon.
Simon wants to take action against Martin.
Advise Simon of his rights in negligence regarding expenses and losses arising from the financial advice provided.