Israeli Regulator Fines ATRADE for Misleading Advertising

AvaTrade's Israeli branch is fined for suggesting that it's safer to trade with a licensed brokerage.

It appears that Israel’s financial watchdog is determined to show that it has sharp teeth and that it won’t hesitate to quickly issue sanctions against local forex and CFDs brokers, even if it only just gave them a license. The Israeli Securities Authority (ISA) today announced that it fined ATRADE, AvaTrade‘s Israeli branch, for misleading advertising – the first time this is done for a regulated operator in the country.

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ATRADE was fined about $42,000 (NIS150,000), after a 75% reduction due to several mitigating factors – mainly the fact that the advertising campaign started just a few weeks after the company got its license and that these are new regulations.

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The regulator says that it took issue with the vast marketing campaign conducted by ATRADE across Israel over different media channels, which included a video ad that featured “misleading content”.

Specifically, the ad suggested that it is safer to trade with ATRADE now that it has received an Israeli trading arena license from the ISA.

The video showed a man falling and saying that before he was worried about falling in the market (as in crashing) but now he is not. The ISA took this as a suggestion that being regulated guaranteed the safety of trading with the brokerage and that by trading with it a client is protected from losses – a false and misleading message about the role of the ISA and the function of its trading arena license.

The ISA says that it will continue to act to ensure that advertising norms comply with the new regulations.

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