July 14, 2016
As part of NFA's ongoing investor education initiatives, NFA revised its Investor Information webpage. This page has been updated with a sleek design to highlight the following NFA resources:
- New Investor Brochure: The brochure provides the investing public with a list of NFA's available online resources.
- Investor Publications: The publications library contains a variety of guides for individuals who want to learn more about the derivatives industry and NFA's role in safeguarding market integrity.
- Investor Newsletter: NFA issues a quarterly Investor Newsletter in an effort to keep investors up-to-date on recent initiatives and educational topics.
- Online Learning Programs: The online learning programs help investors understand trading futures and options on futures, and the retail off-exchange foreign currency (forex) market.
- BASIC: NFA's Background Affiliation Status Information Center (BASIC) is a comprehensive database of CFTC registration, NFA membership, disciplinary and financial information regarding futures, retail forex firms and salespeople.
Before participating in the futures or forex markets, investors should learn about how the markets work, and the firms and individuals with whom they are doing business. These resources provide investors with valuable tools to help perform due diligence before making any investment decisions.
The initiative has grown into a month-long, national campaign that provides free materials as the first line of defense against fraudulent activity and common scams to service members, veterans and the families of military communities. In addition, the Military Consumer website assists consumers in making well-informed decisions when managing money and is available year-round.
A special thank you to all of the Military Consumer partners that provide resources to protect our service members, and to the service members who help protect their country.
NFA is proud to participate as a steering committee partner of Military Consumer.
Scammers can present themselves in a variety of ways. More recently, they have stealthily taken on the identity of government and IRS officials, appearing to investors and consumers as trusted representatives, in an attempt to convince individuals to send them money.
Do you feel like you have already been a target of this type of scam? The following resources provide examples of new techniques, how you can detect them, and where to seek assistance.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) supplies videos and articles as a starting point for consumers to recognize government impersonators. Public imposters can be reported to the FTC's Complaint Assistant which helps them detect patterns of fraud and abuse.
You can also report government impersonators or submit additional Questions and Complaints to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Additionally, FINRA's Alert Investor recently examined how fraudsters pose as government officials and offers tips for avoiding these traps.
"Stop fraud before it happens." Words to remember when visiting the new Fraud.org website, which offers a rebranded experience for users, along with helpful tips and advice for preventing online fraud.
The new website offers a number of resources that can be used to fight against fraudulent activity and keep consumers up-to-date on the trending fraud topics being used to manipulate the public, including:
- Prevention Tips: Avoid potential scams with these consumer prevention tips.
- Common Scams: This compiled list of examples shares what consumers should be aware of when it comes to recent scamming methods.
- Fraud Alerts: Sign up to receive email updates from Fraud.org.
- File a Complaint: Don't let you or your loved ones fall victim to fraud. If you are suspicious of a recent encounter, visit Fraud.org to report your experience.
With every investment comes the potential for risk. The Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) recently issued an Investor Bulletin to help investors understand Master Limited Partnerships (MLPs). The bulletin provides an introduction to the complex exchange-traded investment, reviews its unique characteristics and discusses its risks in depth.
Before considering an MLP, the SEC encourages individuals to do their research by searching EDGAR for an MLP's prospectus, financial reports and other available filings. Visit Investor.gov for more information on MLPs.
In the second quarter of 2016, NFA issued Complaints, Decisions and MRAs against the following NFA Member firms and individuals. Click on the name for more detailed information.