11/04/2012

Central Bank Issues Notice On Unauthorised Investment Firms

The Central Bank of Ireland is advising members of the public and shareholders that should they receive unsolicited contact from any firm which offers them services or advice in relation to the purchase or sale of shares in another company, that they should check the regulatory status of such firms with the Central Bank.

There has been a 100% increase in the amount of queries/complaints received by the Central Bank from members of the public who have been contacted by overseas unauthorised investment firms (commonly called ‘boiler rooms’) and offered the opportunity to purchase shares in another company or to sell existing shares they have in another company; usually for an upfront fee. The rate of return offered for the sale or purchase of shares by these boiler room firms is usually very high, relative to the initial investment made.

It is a criminal offence for an investment firm to operate in Ireland unless it has an authorisation from the Central Bank and clients who deal with unauthorised investment firms have no recourse to the Investor Compensation Scheme.

Any person wishing to contact the Central Bank of Ireland with information regarding such firms may telephone (01) 224 4000. This line is also available to the public to check if an investment firm is authorised.

(CD)

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