To help you identify when a stockbroker/financial advisor has breached his or her fiduciary duty, take a look at the New York Stock Exchange publication, “Content Outline for the General Securities Registered Representative Examination (Test Series 7)”.
Churning, in its most basic form, occurs when a stockbroker/financial advisor buys and sells securities for your account, without regard for your investment interests, for the purpose of generating commissions.
Unauthorized trading occurs when the stockbroker/financial advisor fails to obtain your permission to purchase or sell a security. When an unauthorized purchase or sale has occurred, it is important to complain immediately!
As a fundamental element of their relationship with you, stockbrokers/financial advisors, as well as registered sales assistants, are required to follow your instructions. They may be liable if they fail to do so.