The UK Financial Conduct Authority has stopped Cypriot-based firm, ICC Intercertus Capital Ltd, and other members of the group, trading under the brand EverFX, from offering high-risk CFDs to UK customers.
The UK watchdog found that the EverFX Group used the fact that ICC Intercertus is regulated in the UK. However, many investors were directed to make transactions with other members of the Group, which do not have a licence to offer services in the UK and customers did not have the same level of protection.
The FCA has expressed serious concerns regarding the sales and marketing practices of the EverFX Group. The regulator found the company used misleading financial promotions, failed to inform consumers about the nature and risks of CFDs, applied pressure to invest additional funds, instructed clients on which trades to make, and failed to allow customers to withdraw funds. These practices have led some consumers to lose significant amounts of money.
As a result, the FCA stopped ICC Intercertus from conducting any regulated or marketing activities in the UK. The Authority has asked the company to take all reasonable steps to stop other members of the EverFX Group from doing the same. The firm is also to close all trading positions and return the money to customers.
ICC Intercertus was operating in the country under the Temporary Permission Regime (TPR). The regime was put in place for firms who used to operate in the UK under the EEA passporting regime and who want to continue their operations following the UK’s exit from the European Union. Firms operate under this regime until their applications for full authorisation by the FCA can be considered.
Last week, the FCA reported it has completed the transfer of 52,000 firms and 120,000 users from data collection platform Gabriel to RegData. The transition started in October last year.
The UK regulator recently proposed a new Consumer Duty, which will put in place a higher level of protection in retail financial markets. The UK watchdog has proposed extending rules and principles to ensure firms provide a higher level of consumer protection consistently allowing consumers to have good outcomes from participation in the financial markets.
Experienced writer and journalist, working in the global online trading sector, Steffy is the Editor of LeapRate. She has previous experience as a copywriter and has been with the company since January 2020. Steffy has a British and American Studies degree from St. Kliment Ochridski University in Sofia.