WEEKS after a red flag advisory was issued against the Freedom Traders Club, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has released advisories against four more online investment firms.
Dated on August 1, red flag advisories were issued against Yeheey Itraffic System Inc., Crypto Expert Inc., Purewealth EBC Corporation, and Paysbook E-Commerce System Co. LTD.
According to SEC, while Yeheey is registered with the Commission as a corporation, it is not authorized to solicit investments from the public as "it has not secured the necessary license or permit from the Commission as required under Sections 8 and 12 of the Securities Regulation Code (SRC)."
"Any offering to the public which involves investment of money in a common enterprise with the expectation of profits primarily from the efforts of others, constitutes an investment contract which is a form of securities that needs to be registered with the Commission," the advisory said.
Paysbook, meanwhile, is also not authorized to solicit investments from the public despite it being registered in the Commission's database as a partnership with the primary purpose of engaging in the business of providing other information technology and computer services.
"The above-mentioned entity did not secure prior registration and/or license to solicit investment from the Commission as prescribed under Section 8 of the Securities Regulation Code," it said.
Purewealth is also registered with the Commission as a corporation with the primary purpose of engaging in other wholesale activities.
However, similarly, it is also not authorized to solicit investments from the public as it did not secure a prior registration and/or license to solicit investments.
Crypto Expert Inc., on the other hand, claimed that they are registered with SEC as a corporation but according to the Commission, the said entity is "not registered as a corporation or partnership and is not authorized to solicit investments from the public" for similar reasons as the other online investment firms mentioned above.
SEC has also warned the public of potential investment scam and also included indicators to be observed such as: unrealistic high returns on investment; underlying activity is not explained well or is too complicated to understand; and promoters discourage investor from cashing our his investment and encourages the rolling over of the investment and/or infusing more money.
The public is also advised to "exercise caution before investing in these kinds of activities and to take necessary precaution."
On Friday, August 3, SEC also issued an advisory on free training seminars promoting foreign-registered electronic investment platforms.
The proliferation of free training seminars on trading in Foreign Exchange, Commodity Futures Contracts, Contracts for Difference, and similar derivatives has come to the attention of SEC.
It is said that these seminars are conducted by local and foreign experts and are promoted on radio, television, newspapers and in the internet.
However, according to SEC, some of the seminars serve as a front for illegal offering and selling of unregistered securities by unlicensed brokers.
"The public is hereby advised to be cautious in dealing with the promoters and trainers in these free seminars and to stop investing in foreign-registered investment electronic platforms offering Commodity Futures Contract, Foreign Exchange, Contracts for Difference and similar derivatives," the advisory said.