It’s clear that many people would benefit from learning tips and tricks on how to improve their finances as it appears that half of UK residents are “financially vulnerable” struggling to deal with increases in monthly bills of just £50.
Attendance at an industry event is just one way individuals can learn to manage their finances better. These events offer other benefits, with greater employee engagement for businesses being an example. However, it’s important for consumers to be sure that the organised event is run by a real financial professional instead of a fraudster. Here are some current financial industry event scams to know about as delegates, with the aim of protecting yourself and consumers.
Fake Investment Seminars
Approximately one in five people between the ages of 45 and 54 have less than £99 in savings. Investment seminars can therefore be highly beneficial for people who require greater financial advice. However, investment seminars are the breeding ground for scammers. Student consumers are particularly vulnerable to “money-saving” seminars because they tend to be in debt with their student loans. When the financial services industry makes people aware of such seminar scams, students who are trying to deal with debt and who are finding ways to pay for college can focus on making healthier choices for their financial future.
Understanding The Scams
How investment scams work is that investment seminar events will be promoted by self-made millionaires, so-called investment experts, or motivational speakers. These “experts” will try to persuade consumers to participate in high-risk investment activities, such as borrowing huge amounts of money or buying property. Fraudsters might also try to cultivate a sense of urgency in those attending the seminar, such as by providing misleading claims. These fraudsters could even target seminars attended by delegates.
Keep A Clear Head
It’s worth noting that financial industry events that are worth a person’s time and money will focus on realistic financial goals. They’ll also be run by experts who are easily researched and have a proven track record of success. If this is lacking, it’s a red flag. An example of a reputable investment seminar is the upcoming Strategic Asset Allocation & Portfolio Management in June 2018 at the Eureka Financial Ltd in London. This two-day course reviews the best practices in the investment management industry, with a focus on portfolio construction and asset allocation. The trainer has many years of experience, so if you’re a delegate with knowledge of basics related to asset allocation, portfolio construction techniques, equity analysis, and modern portfolio theory, this is beneficial training.
Seminars That Make Use Of Crazy Claims
You can spot a seminar scam by the promises it outlines. Examples include “No risk on investments”, “Become rich in a few years,” or “Learn all the secrets of the trade.” When these claims sound too good to be true, there’s often something fishy going on! It’s important that delegates and consumers alike take a closer look at what the seminar’s strategies for fulfilling these claims really are about. One of the golden rules to watch out for is this: if it seems like people will achieve higher returns on their investments than seem reasonable, they’re set to lose money. A legitimate seminar will be one that offers a realistic description and that’s focused on learning important things over time, rather than becoming a pro in one day. An example is The Mechanics Of Investment Management that involves 60 hours of distance learning. It starts in September 2018 and looks at issues concerning the investment management sector to provide practitioner-focused perspectives on issues such as equity, fixed income investing, and alternative investments.
Seminars That Involve Complicated Fees
Fraudsters want to get their hands-on people’s money, but they might try to do so in a subtle way. This could involve the fake seminar being focused on “subsidising” the amount individuals have to pay to gain further training. What this means is that the speaker will say that instead of charging a full course fee of thousands of pounds, people will get the chance to pay nothing for the seminar and receive financial monitoring by “financial experts” over a few months or a year. Over time, consumers will be conned out of thousands of pounds for this “financial training.” When viewing industry events as a delegate, always check the price and what’s entailed. You’ll see on Industry Events Online that events have clearly-specified durations and costs. It’s equally important for consumers to choose financial service events that are open and clear about this information.
Watch For Small Signs Of Scams
There are other, smaller but more immediate, instances where consumers can lose money at fake financial seminars. An example is in the form of how they’ll get charged exorbitant attendance fees as well as other fees that seem to crop up everywhere. They might be sold books that promise they’ll become rich quickly or be persuaded to purchase reports that cost a pretty penny without delivering useful financial advice. Although there might be items on sale at events or seminars, a legitimate speaker won’t use them to try to get money from those attending, therefore it’s important for consumers to be educated on how to spot the signs of fraudulent events.
Going to a financial seminar can be an empowering experience for delegates, but it’s important to stay on top of the latest finance industry event scams, such as those mentioned in this article. By being aware of, and forthcoming about, the latest scams, the financial services industry can empower consumers against scammers.
About the author: Sally Perkins is a professional freelance writer with many years experience across many different areas. She made the move to freelancing from a stressful corporate job and loves the work-life balance it offers her. When not at work, Sally enjoys reading, hiking, spending time with her family and travelling as much as possible.