French regulators repeat warning against FX/binary options fraud, as investor losses mount

by Jonathan Adams

A number of French institutions, including the financial markets regulator AMF, the General Directorate for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF), the Authority for prudential control and resolution (ACPR) and the Paris prosecutor’s office, have jointly warned the public regarding the increasing number of cases of Forex and binary options fraud.

The regulators refer to the following key numbers:

  • Only 4 unauthorized FX/binary options sites listed in 2010 and 360 blacklisted currently;
  • AMF received only 64 complaints in 2010, against 1,656 in 2015;
  • 44% of new online ads about financial investments in 2015 concern highly speculative trading (binary options nd Forex);
  • AMF had 16 mediation cases in 2011, against 139 in 2015;
  • 75 complaints about investment scams were handled by the DGCCRF in 2015.
  • The latest AMF study (for 2014) shows that 90% of traders lost money.

According to the Paris prosecutor’s office, estimated losses on illegal sites for Forex / binary options scams is £3.60 billion for a period of six years.

The financial regulators have responded to these developments by issuing more warnings, actively seeking court’s co-operation to close illegal websites and launch investigations into the activities of suspicious companies. The collaboration with CySEC has also been enhanced.

In the face of all juridical and legal tools available, the French regulators admit that combat against financial fraud remains difficult.

This article is for information purposes only.
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