Expat investors warned to avoid scams offering high returns
|Published:||8 Jan at 6 PM|
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Scammers in every favourite expat destination are still cashing in on unwary expats searching for the impossible dream – a far higher return than the rates offered by most international and offshore banks. The British consumer watchdog, Which, is warning expats to beware after its survey revealed an average loss of £6,000 over members surveyed.
Around 10 per cent of the consumer champion’s members had experienced cold-calling by scammers, with a good number of those who decided to take a gamble losing thousands of pounds. The four worst rip-offs at the present time are headed up by the Carbon Credits scam, in which investors are offered green schemes giving cash for the tradable carbon credit certificates.
The scammer forgot to mention that individual investors are disallowed from trading carbon credits, making their certificate worthless. According to the UK’s Financial Conduct Agency, the carbon credit scams are mostly based overseas and are on the rise.
Another 'boiler room' cold-calling scam involves selling worthless shares by promising high returns. High pressure sales scripts are the norm, and include bogus limited-time offers and non-existent bulk discounts.
Most of the 'boiler rooms 'are based overseas, and reputable financial companies are prohibited from cold calling. When the inevitable happens, the investor finds there is no protection against or any legal redress for his loss.
Fine wines and diamonds are favourites with investment scammers, with the wines either overpriced or non-existent and the unregulated diamond market a dream scenario for parting investors from their cash. Even experienced experts often disagree over diamond valuations, and one unlucky expat investor who purchased three stones for £56,000 later found they were only worth £20,000.
Comments » There is 1 comment
I wouldn't fall for these scams in my own country, let alone outside. In fact, if anything, when living overseas, I'm even more careful of where I invest my money.