One of Canada’s provincial regulator, the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC), has added another binary options brokerage to its Investor Caution List, once again shining the spotlight on an industry that continues to incur the wrath of the world’s watchdogs.
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The binary options provider in question is Icon Markets Limited, which operates the brand Hedgestone Group via the website www.hedgestonegroup.com. It is offering services to the BC public while unauthorised to do so. According to the BCSC, Hedgestone opened a trading account for a British Columbia resident. It has therefore urged investors to use caution when dealing with this company.
Interestingly, Hedgestone publishes a warning on its website stating that it does not accept clients from Canada and South Africa, United States and Australia. The company claims to be based in Belize, and offers an online binary options and contracts for difference (CFD) trading platform.
After briefly explaining binary options and certain risks and features with these types of products, the BCSC noted that while some binary options are listed on exchanges and traded by registered individuals, these represent only a portion of the market, while a large portion of binary options are illegally traded through unregulated online platforms.
The BCSC is the independent provincial government agency responsible for regulating securities trading in British Columbia through the administration of the Securities Act. The regulator’s website provides information, tools and resources for investors, including investor warnings about individuals and companies that appear to be engaging in unauthorized activities.