WEALTH Matters — SUMMER 2009

Investment fraud

The Bernie Madoff scandal in the United States has increased concern about fraudulent investment schemes. Some Canadian advisors have also failed to invest clients’ money, or invested it in fake companies. This is of great concern to us because it erodes our clients’ confidence in responsible professional firms like ours.

Fortunately, there are steps that we already take, and that you can take, to protect yourself.

Page and Associates ltd:

Phone:    905-884-5563

Fax:         905-884-3365

E-mail:     experience@askpage.com

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investment fraud

· Avoid investments that require or allow a deposit in cash. No Canadian financial institution allows investments to be made in cash except through your bank account. Investments must be purchased by cheque or Electronic Funds Transfer so they can be traced. This reduces the risk of fraud.

· Never sign a cheque and leave the Payee blank. This is like handing over cash - anyone can write their own name in the Payee space and cash the cheque. If funds are being invested for you and the specific name of the Payee is unclear, make the cheque payable to yourself so it can only be invested in your name.

· Make sure you get a confirmation slip from the actual financial institution or investment product manufacturer, not just from your representative. Also make sure the dealer you are dealing with is a member of a regulatory organization like the Mutual Fund Dealers Association which offers a consumer protection program against fraud. You automatically get all of these protections when you deal with our firm, so you need not worry.

 

 

Mutual Funds and Segregated funds provided by Fund Companies offered through

Worldsource Financial Management Inc. sponsoring mutual fund dealer.

All other services provided by Page and Associates Ltd.

If you hear of any investment that intrigues you, give us a call and tell us about it. We’ll be able to get the official disclosure documents for you and can help you understand the risks and alternatives so you can make an informed choice.

One rule above all others can protect you: “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” Risk and reward go hand in hand. An investment that ‘guarantees’ a 10% return will certainly have a number of risks associated with it. Be sure you get a written explanation of the risks of the investments you’re considering buying and discuss those risks with your advisor. A mutual fund will disclose these risks in their Prospectus. A structured note or limited partnership will have an Offering Memorandum. If you don’t get disclosure in writing, don’t invest. If you’ve never heard of the company offering the investment product, look them up on the internet.

Here are a few other methods of protecting yourself.

Bernie Madoff

CASHX

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