Dronfield financial planners, Belmayne, are urging local investors to be more scam savvy, following the collapse of £236 million fund, London Capital and Finance (LCF).
Belmayne partner, David Bashforth, said: “Scams can be hard to spot, especially if they have a veneer of legitimacy by being accessible through reputable providers, regulated by the FCA.”
Thousands of UK investors lost their life savings after LCF entered administration last week and stand to receive as little as 20% of their money back. The firm’s marketing campaign is now being investigated for mis-selling.
David added: “Many of the people caught up in LCF’s downfall are first time investors, small business owners and the newly retired. They were told their money was being spread across hundreds of companies, but it has transpired the fund loaned to just 12.
“This shocking news has left reputable financial planners, like Belmayne, wondering how we can protect people from the scourge of scammers. We need to better educate clients to spot warning signs, such as the promise of unrealistically high returns and encourage them to seek a second or even third opinion before signing on the dotted line.”
Belmayne has recently advised an ex-police officer who lost his retirement funds, after deciding to transfer out of the force’s final salary pension scheme and into a self-invested personal pension. Some of his money has been recouped in compensation, but as it now falls outside a pension wrapper, it will be subject to tax.