Poland’s financial regulatory body, the Polish Financial Supervision Authority (KNF), today announced another tranche of regulation reforms pertaining to investment firms, this time setting specific requirements leading to a ban on the advertising of risky financial products, including forex. The modified provisions will enter into force as of April 29, 2017.
The regulatory update is a reaction to the observed rapid expansion of investment firms offering brokerage services on the forex market. According to the watchdog’s circular, the only legitimate entities to operate brokerage activities will be the KNF-authorised investment firms or an agent of such regulated entities which is often a broker acting for and on behalf of the investment firm.
The KNF’s tightening will also cover activities involving acquisition of retail clients, including information provided through marketing channels. The only exception to perform such activities by entities other than the approved operators is when the product information is offered to a broad group of prospective clients on an undefined basis.
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The changes detailed in the circular also included revisions for the rules of marketing forex products within Poland, namely: the KNF noted increased activity of unregulated affiliates residing in the country, who attracted customers to offshore forex brokers using aggressive marketing tactics.
According to the amended provisions of the Act “Whoever, without the required authorization or authorization contained in separate regulations or otherwise authorized by the law to operate in trade in financial instruments, is subject to a fine of up to PLN 5,000,000.”
Current laws allow Polish authorities to slap a similar fine on companies that are providing financial services in the country unlawfully, up to PLN 5 million ($1.26 million). The KNF is proposing to double the maximum fine and criminalize such activities.