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Investor Alert - Do not make investments with unregistered firms such as Options Area

Alert.

New Brunswickers are warned to exercise caution before making any investment with a person or company who is not registered with the Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB) to sell or trade investments in the province.

“Most investors in New Brunswick decide to purchase investments through a registered financial institution that is familiar to them, or from someone they know personally who is employed at a registered firm,” said Director of Enforcement for the FCNB Jake van der Laan,. “It is generally a very bad idea to invest with a company that contacts you out of the blue to invest in something you don’t fully understand.”

The enforcement division of FCNB is currently concerned about an unregistered company that uses the business name Options Area. A New Brunswick resident recently forwarded $10,000 to this company. Even though the salesperson stated they were calling from Toronto, the company is not registered in New Brunswick, which  makes it extremely difficult to tell where they are actually located.

New Brunswickers who have been approached by Options Area or other unregistered companies soliciting investments are encouraged to contact FCNB immediately. People can verify if a company or individual is registered on the FCNB’s website: http://fcnb.ca/CheckRegistration.  

Options Area purports to sell binary options. The FCNB issued an investor alert about Binary Options in February. Binary options are similar to bets on whether the value of an asset will increase or decrease in a fixed - and often very short - period of time. Buying them may put any money invested at significant risk.

Being an informed investor is your best defence against investment fraud. Learn how to protect yourself by taking advantage of the resources available on FCNB’s website, which provides details about boiler room operations and other common investment scams.

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission regulates, educates and protects consumers and investors from unfair, improper or fraudulent practices. It brings together regulatory authorities for securities, insurance, pensions, consumer affairs, co-operatives, credit unions, caisses populaires, and loan and trust companies. It is an independent Crown Corporation self-funded by the fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.