Raw Deals and Phony Seals
Q: I receive emails about “once-in-a-lifetime” investment opportunities every week. I usually just delete them, but I recently got one that claimed to be endorsed by the SEC, complete with your seal. Do you have a list of “good” investments, and how do I find out if this opportunity is actually on the list?
A: Fraudsters are clever, but there’s one way to outsmart them every time: do your own independent research before you invest your hard-earned money.
You should be skeptical if a securities offering is touted as “approved” by the SEC. We don’t evaluate the merits of any securities offering, nor do we label a particular security as a “good” investment. We do review registration statements to make sure that companies satisfy our disclosure rules, but you’ll never see us recommending a particular investment.
Fraudsters work hard to make their schemes look very official and legitimate. Don’t be taken in by a glossy brochure, a glitzy website or the presence of our seal. Just like we don’t approve investments, we don’t allow the private use of our seal by companies – even as a link to our website.
Q: I would like unbiased information about buying a home. Can you help?
A: MyMoney.gov is the U.S. Government’s website dedicate to teaching all Americans about the basics of financial education. It contains an entire section on home ownership, including a 9-step guide to purchasing a home.