NFA Investor Newsletter
July 19 , 2011
|In this Issue:||Older Investors and Investment Fraud||Precious Metals Alerts||Phishing Scams||Las Vegas Expo||Investor.gov|
The Alliance for Investor Education (AIE) has recently announced the launch of a new section of its website which highlights 10 of the best web-based resources for older investors and their family members about how to spot and protect themselves from investment fraud. The Alliance's new "Older Americans & Investment Fraud: Protecting Yourself, Protecting Your Loved Ones" is available on their website.
AIE President Sue Duncan, who also serves as vice president of the ICI Education Foundation (ICIEF) at the Investment Company Institute, said: "With the Baby Boomer generation just starting to retire, having saved and invested for years, scammers are looking for ways to take advantage of those nest eggs. The Alliance for Investor Education wants to make sure older Americans can spot red flags when investing. Family members also need to be aware that their parents and older relatives may be at higher risk of being taken advantage of by fraudsters and should know how to protect their loved ones."
Some of the resources featured on the website include:
1. Caring for Loved Ones - Securities and Exchange Commission.
2. My Retirement Paycheck - National Endowment for Financial Education.
3. Fighting Fraud 101: Smart Tips for Older Investors - Financial Industry Regulatory Authority/FINRA Foundation.
4. Elder Investment Fraud and Financial Exploitation Prevention Program - Investor Protection Trust.
5. Family and Finances: Start the Dialogue - American Association of Individual Investors.
The 20-member Alliance for Investor Education "is dedicated to facilitating greater understanding of investing, investments and the financial markets among current and prospective investors of all ages. We pursue initiatives for education and join with others to motivate Americans to obtain objective information and increase their knowledge and understanding of investing." National Futures Association is a proud member of AIE.
In these times of economic uncertainty and hardship, more and more individuals are looking for alternative investments. Many of them are turning to precious metals, such as gold and silver. However, with opportunity comes risk and precious metals fraud is on the rise.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the nation's consumer protection agency, has recently revised its series of Consumer Alerts to help investors avoid fraud in the area of precious metals. "Investing in Gold? What's the Rush", "Investing in Bullion and Bullion Coins" and "Investing in Collectible Coins" include valuable tips for people interested in precious metals and lists other websites where individuals can obtain additional information.
Being the victim of investment fraud is painful, both financially and emotionally. Now, the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) warns that these victims may become victims a second time, thanks to a scam offering to facilitate the return of their lost funds. Individuals falsely claiming to represent SIPC ask for personal information or payments in order to return funds lost in investment scams.
SIPC is the U.S. investor's first line of defense in the event a brokerage firm fails, owing customers cash and securities that are missing from customer accounts. SIPC either acts as trustee or works with an independent court-appointed trustee in a brokerage insolvency case to recover funds.
SIPC President Stephen Harbeck said: "When the liquidation of a brokerage firm is handled by SIPC, investors with missing stocks or cash do not pay a fee for recovery of these assets. Any individuals contacted by supposed representatives of SIPC who request an upfront fee or personal information should be extremely wary."
For more information, contact SIPC at firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 371-8300.
NFA will again this year participate in the Futures and Forex Trading Expo, held on September 22-24 at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. NFA will sponsor an information booth in the exhibit hall, where staff will distribute forex education brochures and discuss how to conduct online background checks of forex firms and brokers.
"Investors attending the Expo spend a lot of time learning forex trading strategies," says Larry Dyekman, director of Communications and Education at NFA. "We give them the opportunity to spend an equal amount of time learning about the risks involved in trading forex and the firms who are vying for their money."
For more information on the expo, visit the expo's website.
As part of its investor education effort, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently upgraded its Investor.gov website devoted exclusively to investor education. The site has been redesigned and expanded with more information about a variety of topics including how to research investments and investment professionals, understand fees, and prepare for life events. The updated Investor.gov also includes materials targeted to such specific groups as members of the military, teachers, and retirees. Videos, interactive quizzes, and additional investor education resources are expected to be added to the website in coming months.
In the second quarter of 2011, NFA's Business Conduct Committee issued Decisions, Member Responsibility Actions, Final Orders in Registration Cases and Complaints against the following NFA Member firms and individuals. Click on the name for more detailed information.
You can check the registration status and disciplinary history of any futures firm or individual.
You can file a complaint online. Be sure to include as much information as you can.
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