The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy provides a variety of services and tools to address problems you may face as an investor. Investor Alerts, focused on recent investment frauds and scams, and Investor Bulletins, focused on topical issues including recent Commission actions, are provided as a service to investors. They are neither legal interpretations nor statements of SEC policy. If you have questions concerning the meaning or application of a particular law or rule, please consult with an attorney who specializes in securities law. Subscribe to get Investor Alerts and Bulletins by email.

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Date
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Date: Title: Investor Alert: Be Vigilant for Possible Investment Scams Related to the California Wildfires
The SEC's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to alert investors, including individuals who may receive lump sum payouts from insurance companies and others as a result of damage from the California wildfires, to investment scams that may take advantage of the disaster.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Bulletin: The ABCs of Credit Ratings
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy and Office of Credit Ratings are issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about credit ratings.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: World Investor Week
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, FINRA (the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority), and NASAA (the North American Securities Administrators Association) are issuing this Investor Bulletin to highlight the key messages of World Investor Week, a week-long, global campaign promoted by International Organization of Securities Commissions to raise awareness about the importance of investor education and protection. During World Investor Week (October 2-8, 2017), individual investors, investment professionals, teachers, parents, researchers, and other interested individuals, firms, regulators, and organizations are encouraged to make a special effort to communicate these key investor education messages:
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Opening an Investment Advisory Account
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to provide tips on what to consider when opening an investment advisory account. Investment advisory accounts differ from brokerage accounts, which generally are governed by different rules and regulations. For information on opening a brokerage account, please see our bulletin: How to Open a Brokerage Account.

Before opening an account with any financial professional, you should always remember to check the individual or entity’s background and disciplinary history. You can do this using the IAPD database found at Investor.gov.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Financial Professionals’ Use of Professional Honors – Awards, Rankings, and Designations
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate individual investors about the professional awards, rankings, and designations that financial professionals often use to market themselves to prospective clients.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Bulletin: Trading in Cash Accounts
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help educate investors regarding the rules that apply to trading securities in cash accounts and to highlight the 90-day account freeze which may arise with certain trading activities in these type of accounts.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Be Vigilant for Investment Scams Related to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma
The SEC's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to alert investors, including individuals who may receive lump sum payouts from insurance companies and others as a result of damage from Hurricanes Harvey or Irma, to investment scams that may take advantage of the disaster.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Public Companies Making ICO-Related Claims
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is warning investors about potential scams involving stock of companies claiming to be related to, or asserting they are engaging in, Initial Coin Offerings (or ICOs). Fraudsters often try to use the lure of new and emerging technologies to convince potential victims to invest their money in scams. These frauds include “pump-and-dump” and market manipulation schemes involving publicly traded companies that claim to provide exposure to these new technologies.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Bulletin: New “T+2” Settlement Cycle – What Investors Need To Know
On March 22, 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission amended Exchange Act Rule 15c6-1 to shorten the standard settlement cycle for broker-dealers transaction from “T+3” to “T+2,” subject to certain exceptions. The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) is issuing this investor bulletin to explain the new “T+2” settlement cycle and how it will affect certain transactions you place with your full-service or online brokerage firm.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: An Introduction to ABLE Accounts
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about ABLE accounts.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Fraudsters May Target Federal Government Employee Retirement Plan Participants
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) and Broker-Dealer Task Force are warning the more than 5 million Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) participants, and investors in other federal government employee retirement plans, that investment scam artists may pretend to be affiliated with a government agency.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Initial Coin Offerings
Developers, businesses, and individuals increasingly are using initial coin offerings, also called ICOs or token sales, to raise capital. These activities may provide fair and lawful investment opportunities. However, new technologies and financial products, such as those associated with ICOs, can be used improperly to entice investors with the promise of high returns in a new investment space. The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to make investors aware of potential risks of participating in ICOs.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Retirement Investing Through 403(b) and 457(b) Plans
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to provide investors with educational information about the basics of retirement investing through 403(b) and 457(b) plans.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Stop, Stop-Limit, and Trailing Stop Orders
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help educate investors about the difference between using “stop,” “stop limit” and “trailing stop” orders to buy and sell stocks.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Understanding Order Types
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help educate investors about the different types of orders they can use to buy and sell stocks through a brokerage firm.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Bulletin: Crowdfunding for Investors
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about a new investing opportunity in the form of securities-based crowdfunding.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Be Cautious of SAFEs in Crowdfunding
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about a type of security, often described as a SAFE (a “Simple Agreement for Future Equity”), that may be offered in crowdfunding offerings.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Help for Adult Protective Services (APS) Workers Encountering Senior Investor Fraud
It can be tricky to tell if a senior has been a victim of investment fraud or to know what to do when it happens. The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help Adult Protective Services (APS) workers and others identify when a senior has been a victim of investment fraud and to explain what APS workers and others can do about it.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Crowdfunding Investment Limits Increase
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to advise investors about the inflation-adjusted increase in the investment limits for securities-based crowdfunding.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Bulletin: Protecting Your Online Investment Accounts from Fraud
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help investors protect their online investment accounts from fraud. As with all web-based accounts, investors should take precautions to help ensure that their online brokerage accounts remain secure. These online security tips can help.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Investor Complaints
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) is issuing this Investor Bulletin to inform investors about how OIEA handles investor complaints and other ways investors may be able to resolve a securities-related dispute.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Beware of Stock Recommendations on Investment Research Websites
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors that seemingly independent commentary on investment research websites may in fact be part of paid stock promotion campaigns.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Ten Ways to Use Investor.gov
Whether you are investing on your own, working with a financial professional, planning your retirement, or just interested in learning more about investing generally, here are ten ways you can use Investor.gov to become a more informed investor and avoid fraud.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Robo-Advisers
The last few years have seen the growth in availability and popularity of automated digital investment advisory programs (often called “robo-advisers”). These programs allow individual investors to create and manage their investment accounts through a web portal or mobile application, sometimes with little or no interaction with a human being with the potential benefit of lower costs than traditional investment advisory programs. The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about these programs, and to help investors using robo-advisers to make informed decisions in meeting their investment goals.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Savings and Investing Basics for Military Personnel
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help military personnel make more informed savings and investing decisions and avoid common scams. Below is a list of ten suggestions that may help military personnel – and any investor – make better investments and avoid fraud.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Alternative Mutual Funds
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to inform you about features, and some potential risks, of alternative mutual funds.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Bulletin: Focus on Money Market Funds
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help educate investors about money market funds, including money market funds’ investment objectives and risks. For additional assistance, investors can call the SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy at 1-800-SEC-0330, or ask a question using this online form.
Category:Investment Management
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Excessive Trading at Investors’ Expense
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) and Broker-Dealer Task Force are jointly issuing this Investor Alert to help investors identify excessive trading in their brokerage accounts and to educate investors about steps they should take if their brokerage firm notifies them of a high volume of trade activity in their accounts.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: 10 Investment Tips for 2017
Whether you are a first-time investor or have been investing for years, here are 10 tips from the SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy to help you make better informed investment decisions and avoid common scams in 2017.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Broker-Dealer/Customer Arbitration
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help educate investors about the arbitration and mediation processes involving a customer dispute with a broker-dealer.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Binary Options Websites May Be Used for Fraudulent Schemes
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors that fraudsters may conduct investment schemes through purported online binary options trading platforms. While some binary options are listed on registered exchanges or traded on a designated contract market that are subject to oversight by U.S. regulators such as the SEC or the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, respectively, this is only a portion of the binary options market. Much of the binary options market operates through Internet-based trading platforms that are not necessarily complying with applicable U.S. regulatory requirements. For a comprehensive overview of binary options, including information about investing in binary options that are subject to U.S. regulatory oversight, read our Investor Alert: Binary Options and Fraud.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Investment Scams Involving Fake Forms 4
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about potential investment schemes in which fraudsters send fake Forms 4 to investors who paid for the purported purchase of shares.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Microcap Stock Basics (Part 3 of 3: Risk)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing a series of three Investor Bulletins to provide investors with important information to consider before investing in microcap stocks, often known as penny stocks. The Bulletins provide a general overview of microcap stocks and their marketplaces, a list of sources to research microcap stocks, and a list of “red flags” of fraud and other important factors to consider before making an investment in microcap stocks.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Microcap Stock Basics (Part 2 of 3: Research)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing a series of three Investor Bulletins to provide investors with important information to consider before investing in microcap stocks often known as penny stocks. The Bulletins provide a general overview of microcap stocks and their marketplaces, a list of sources to research microcap stocks, and a list of “red flags” of fraud and other important factors to consider before making an investment in microcap stocks.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Be on the Lookout for Investment Scams Related to Hurricane Matthew
The SEC's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors, including individuals who may receive lump sum payouts from insurance companies and others as a result of damage from Hurricane Matthew, about investment fraud.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Tick Size Pilot Program – What Investors Need To Know
Beginning October 3, 2016, a new National Market System (NMS) Plan to implement a Tick Size Pilot Program (the “pilot”) will widen the minimum quoting and trading increment —sometimes called the “tick size” — for some small capitalization stocks. The goal of the pilot is to study the effect of tick size on liquidity and trading of small capitalization stocks.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) are issuing this investor alert to explain the pilot and how it might affect certain orders you place with your full-service or online brokerage firm. We also provide some background on the pilot and why it is being implemented.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Microcap Stock Basics (Part 1 of 3: General Information)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing a series of three Investor Bulletins to provide investors with important information to consider before investing in microcap stocks, often known as penny stocks. The Bulletins provide a general overview of microcap stocks and their marketplaces, a list of sources to research microcap stocks, and a list of “red flags” of fraud and other important factors to consider before making an investment in microcap stocks.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: Be on the Lookout for Advance Fee Fraud
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors about advance fee fraud.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Bulletin: How Fees and Expenses Affect Your Investment Portfolio
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this updated bulletin to educate investors about how fees can impact the value of an investment portfolio.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Publicly Traded REITs
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this bulletin to educate investors about investing in publicly traded REITs.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Bulletin: Top Tips for Selecting a Financial Professional
Choosing a financial professional is an important decision. This updated Investor Bulletin provides a few key tips to help you make a well-informed choice. A number of questions you should consider asking before you hire a financial professional are listed at the end of this Bulletin. Should you have any questions for us, feel free to call our toll-free investor assistance at 1-800-SEC-0330 or use our online question web form at https://www.sec.gov/oiea/QuestionsAndComments.html.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Performance Claims
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about investment performance claims. If you are in the market for an investment, you will likely come across sales and marketing materials that describe an investment’s performance. You should know that performance information can be presented in many different ways. Before making a decision, always make sure you understand how any performance claim is calculated and presented – and whether or not the claim is reliable and applies to your particular circumstances. Here are a few things to consider.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: Be on the Lookout for Investment Scams Related to the Recent Historic Rain and Flooding
The SEC's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors, including individuals who may receive lump sum payouts from insurance companies and others following the recent historic rainfall and flooding in and around South Carolina, about investment fraud.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: What You Should Know About Asset Recovery Companies
Third party asset recovery companies solicit victims of scams, including investment frauds, with promises to file complaints with regulatory agencies and to help recover victims’ money for a fee. The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to urge investors and fraud victims to think carefully before paying money for asset recovery services that may be fruitless.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Mutual Fund Classes
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to provide investors information about mutual fund classes. This bulletin addresses some of the fees that may apply to certain common mutual fund classes, but please note that mutual funds may have other fees and expenses that you should take into account when making an investment decision. For more information on mutual fund fees and expenses, read our Investor Bulletin: Mutual Fund Fees and Expenses.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert for Seniors: Five Red Flags of Investment Fraud
Older Americans are often targets of investment fraud. The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Updated Investor Alert to help seniors identify signs that what is offered as an investment may actually be a fraud. Below are five “red flags” seniors should look out for when making an investment decision.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Variable Annuities-Should You Accept a Buyout Offer?
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about some of the pros and cons of variable annuity buyout offers. This bulletin will provide information to help you consider whether a buyout is right for you.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Beware of Government Impersonators Targeting Fraud Victims
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) is issuing this Investor Alert because we are aware of communications, including official looking documents, that falsely claim to be issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission and seek money from investors who have already been victims of fraud.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Form ADV – Investment Adviser Brochure and Brochure Supplement
Investment advisers provide a wide range of advisory services and play an important role in helping individuals and institutions make significant financial decisions. To allow clients and prospective clients to evaluate the risks associated with a particular investment adviser, its business practices, and its investment strategies, it is essential that clients and prospective clients have clear disclosure that they are likely to read and understand. Part 2 of Form ADV requires investment advisers to provide new and prospective clients with a brochure and brochure supplements written in plain English. The requirements of Part 2 are designed to provide new and prospective clients with clearly written, meaningful current disclosure of the business practices, conflicts of interest, and background of the investment adviser firm and the firm’s employees who provide advice.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: How to Read a Mutual Fund Prospectus (Part 1 of 3: Investment Objective, Strategies, and Risks)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing a series of three Investor Bulletins to help inform investors about key information in a prospectus. You should note, however, that a prospectus contains additional information that may assist investors in making an investment decision.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: How to Read a Mutual Fund Prospectus (Part 2 of 3: Fee Table and Performance)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing a series of three Investor Bulletins to help inform investors about key information in a prospectus. You should note, however, that a prospectus contains additional information that may assist investors in making an investment decision.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: How to Read a Mutual Fund Prospectus (Part 3 of 3: Management, Shareholder Information, and Statement of Additional Information)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing a series of three Investor Bulletins to help inform investors about key information in a prospectus. You should note, however, that a prospectus contains additional information that may assist investors in making an investment decision.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Master Limited Partnerships – An Introduction
The Securities and Exchange Commission’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help investors understand Master Limited Partnerships, or MLPs. Because investing in an MLP may be unfamiliar, investors should carefully consider potential benefits – and the risks – before making an investment decision.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: Fraudulent Stock Promotions
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this updated Investor Alert to warn investors about fraudsters who promote a stock to drive up the stock price and then sell their own shares at the inflated price, making money at investors’ expense.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Zika Crisis May Give Rise to Investment Scams
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about potential investment scams involving companies that claim their products or services relate to the Zika virus.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: SEC Warns of Government Impersonators
SEC staff is issuing this updated Investor Alert because we are aware of continuing fraudulent solicitations that purport to be affiliated with or sponsored by the Securities and Exchange Commission, including scams that make phony claims of endorsement by senior officials at the SEC.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: 10 Investment Tips for 2016
Whether you are a first-time investor or have been investing for years, here are ten tips from the SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy to help you make more informed investing decisions and avoid common scams in 2016.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Securities-Backed Lines of Credit
An increasing number of securities firms are marketing and offering securities-backed lines of credit, or SBLOCs, to investors. SBLOCs can be a key revenue source for securities firms, especially in times of solid market returns and growing investment portfolios, when investors may feel more comfortable leveraging their assets. Firms market SBLOCs as a type of financing and liquidity strategy that can unlock the value of your investment portfolio. Between 2012 and 2014, one large brokerage firm that offers these programs reported a 70 percent increase in its securities-based lending business, while another firm reported an over 50 percent increase.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) are issuing this investor alert to provide information about the basics of SBLOCs, how they may be marketed to you, and what risks you should consider before posting your investment portfolio as collateral. SBLOCs may seem like an attractive way to access extra capital when markets are producing positive returns, but market volatility can magnify your potential losses, placing your financial future at greater risk.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Exchange Traded Notes (ETNs)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about exchange-traded notes (“ETNs”). ETNs are unsecured debt obligations of financial institutions that trade on a securities exchange. ETN payment terms are linked to the performance of a reference index or benchmark, representing the ETN’s investment objective. You should understand that ETNs are complex and involve many risks for interested investors, and can result in the loss of your entire investment.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Variable Annuities – An Introduction (PDF)
This SEC Office of Investor Education and Advocacy Investor Bulletin provides some basic facts about variable annuities and how they work. Variable annuities are complex products, and this Investor Bulletin focuses solely on the basics.
Category:Investment Management
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: Social Media and Investing -- Stock Rumors
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (“OIEA”) is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about fraudsters who may attempt to manipulate share prices by using social media to spread false or misleading information about stocks.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: An Introduction to Short Sales
The Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin for investors to provide them with the basics, including some of the potential risks, of short sales.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Be on the Lookout for Investment Scams Related to the Recent Historic Rain and Flooding
The SEC's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors, including individuals who may receive lump sum payouts from insurance companies and others following the recent historic rainfall and flooding in and around South Carolina, about investment fraud.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Investment-Related Radio Programs Used to Defraud
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to provide investors with an overview of fraudulent schemes that may be carried out through radio programs.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Identity Theft, Data Breaches and Your Investment Accounts
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to provide investors with important steps to take regarding their investment accounts if they become victims of identity theft or a data breach. Investors should always take steps to safeguard their personal financial information (e.g., social security number, financial account numbers, phone number, e-mail address, or usernames and passwords for online financial accounts). However, if identity theft or a data breach compromises your personal financial information, here are some important steps to take immediately.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Non-traded REITs
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this bulletin to educate investors about investing in non-traded REITs.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: 10 Things to Know About Receivers
The Securities and Exchange Commission’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help investors understand the role of receivers in SEC cases.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: An Introduction to The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission – Rulemaking and Laws
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to provide investors with an overview of the SEC’s rulemaking functions and a brief description of the laws that govern the securities industry.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: An Introduction to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission – Organization and Mission
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to provide investors with a general overview of the SEC’s mission, responsibilities, and organizational structure.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: SEC Warns of Government Impersonators Demanding Money
SEC staff is issuing this updated Investor Alert because we are

aware of fraudulent communications, including official looking documents

such as bogus subpoenas, that purport to be from the Securities and

Exchange Commission demanding money for fictitious securities law

violations.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Regulation A
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about Regulation A. The SEC has recently amended Regulation A in order to implement the part of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act that makes Regulation A a more compelling option for smaller companies to use to raise money.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Beware of Fantasy Stock Trading Websites Offering Real Returns
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about fantasy stock trading and other similar websites that may violate federal securities laws designed to protect investors from abuses in the swaps market.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert for Seniors: Five Red Flags of Investment Fraud
Older Americans are often targets of investment fraud. The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help seniors identify signs that what is offered as an investment may actually be a fraud. Below are five “red flags” seniors should look out for when making an investment decision.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Beware of False or Exaggerated Credentials
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors that fraudsters may misrepresent their backgrounds and experience to lure investors into investment schemes. Before investing, investors should verify that any person who tries to sell them an investment product or service is properly licensed or registered and should not make investment decisions based solely on assertions regarding the person’s credentials or professional experience, including claims found on the Internet or in traditional media sources.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin and Consumer Advisory: Planning for Diminished Capacity and Illness
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy and the CFPB’s Office for Older Americans are issuing this bulletin to help investors and consumers understand the potential impact of diminished capacity on their ability to make financial decisions and to encourage investors and consumers to plan for possible diminished financial capacity well before it happens.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: SEC Warns of Government Impersonators
SEC staff is issuing this updated Investor Alert because we are aware of continuing fraudulent solicitations that purport to be affiliated with or sponsored by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Automated Investment Tools
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA) are issuing this alert to provide investors with a general overview of automated investment tools.
Category:Investment Management
Trading and Markets
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: Beware of Companies Using the SEC Seal
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this updated Investor Alert to help investors identify fraudsters’ unauthorized use of the SEC seal as a way to convince prospective customers that a fraud, including an advance fee loan scam, is legitimate.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Bankruptcy for a Public Company
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about what happens when a publicly traded company declares bankruptcy.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: An Introduction to Options
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education is issuing this investor bulletin to help educate investors about the basics, including some of the potential risks, of options trading. Options trading may occur in a variety of securities marketplaces and may involve a wide range of financial products, from stocks to foreign currencies. This bulletin focuses on the basics of trading listed stock options.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Opening an Options Account
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education is issuing this investor bulletin to help you to understand what to expect when opening an options trading account with your broker-dealer.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Roth TSP for Uniformed Services Members
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help educate uniformed services members about the Roth Thrift Savings Plan.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: “Prime Bank” Investments Are Scams
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about fraudulent investment schemes involving purportedly high-yield, risk-free international finance programs.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Structured Notes
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to inform investors of features – and some potential risks – of structured notes. While structured notes may enable individual retail investors to participate in investment strategies that are not typically offered to them, these products can be very complex and have significant investment risks. Before investing in structured notes, you should understand how the notes work and carefully consider their risks.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: 15 Investment Tips for 2015
Whether you’re a first-time investor or have been investing for years, here are fifteen tips to help you make more informed financial decisions and avoid common investment scams in 2015.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: How Harmed Investors May Recover Money
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about how they may be able to recover money if they have been harmed by a violation of the federal securities laws.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Brokers’ Miscellaneous Fees
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this bulletin to make investors aware of the miscellaneous fees charged by some brokers.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Investment Scams Involving Ebola-Related Companies
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about investment scams involving companies that claim their products or services relate to Ebola.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: Social Media and Investing - Avoiding Fraud
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help investors be better aware of fraudulent investment schemes that may involve social media. U.S. retail investors are increasingly turning to social media, including Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn and other online networks for information about investing. Whether it be for research on particular stocks, background information on a broker-dealer or investment adviser, guidance on an overall investing strategy, up-to-date news, or to simply discuss the markets with others, social media has become a key tool for U.S. investors.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Dormant Shell Companies – How to Protect Your Portfolio from Fraud
FINRA and the SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy are issuing this alert to warn investors that some low-priced “penny” stocks that are aggressively promoted may in fact be stocks of dormant shell companies – companies that have no or nominal business operations or non-cash assets for an extended period of time. Many dormant shell companies that continue to trade in the over-the-counter (OTC) market are susceptible to market manipulation. This alert follows action by the SEC to suspend trading in 255 dormant shell companies in February 2014 and subsequent suspensions of other thinly traded penny stocks.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: SEC Investigations
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to provide investors with a general overview of how the SEC’s Division of Enforcement conducts investigations.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Private Placements Under Regulation D
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about investing in unregistered securities offerings, or private placements, under Regulation D of the Securities Act.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Be on the Lookout for Advance Fee Fraud
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors about advance fee fraud.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Trading Suspensions
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to help educate investors about the SEC’s rules and regulations related to trading suspensions. The federal securities laws generally allow the SEC to suspend trading in any stock for up to ten business days. This bulletin answers some of the typical questions we receive from investors about trading suspensions. A list of companies whose stock is currently subject to an SEC trading suspension, or which previously has been subject to an SEC trading suspension, may be found here.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: How to Check Out Your Financial Professional
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this investor bulletin to provide investors with resources to check out a financial professional’s background.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: 10 Red Flags That an Unregistered Offering May Be a Scam
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help investors identify potentially fraudulent unregistered offerings.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Ten Things You Should Know About Investing
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to provide investors basic information that may help them make informed financial decisions and avoid common scams.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: SEC Warns of Fake Correspondence
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's (SEC) Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this updated Investor Alert to warn investors that fraudsters may use fake SEC correspondence as part of a scam to steal your money (including phony letters using the SEC seal and purporting to be signed by SEC Inspector General Carl Hoecker).
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Transferring Your Investment Account
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about transferring an investment account from one investment firm to another and to provide tips on how to avoid problems and delays.
Category:Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Affinity Fraud
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors about affinity fraud, a type of investment scam that preys upon members of identifiable groups, such as religious or ethnic communities or the elderly.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
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