FCA Warns of Clone Firm Pretending to be ICE Futures Europe

The UK regulator has warned against unlicensed Liffe Exchange, a clone of an established FCA-regulated entity.

The United Kingdom’s financial markets watchdog, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), today exposed another fraudulent entity, this time bringing to light the clone firm Liffe Exchange which has been included in its warning list of unregulated entities, according to an FCA statement.

Liffe Exchange vs ICE Futures Europe

ICE Futures Europe is the UK-regulated, London-based subsidiary of Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) which offers futures and options contracts on energy, interest rates, equity derivatives, grains and softs and emissions. The FCA-regulated entity which is accessible online via www.theice.com, is based at Milton Gate, 60 Chiswell Street, London, UK.

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By contrast, the company’s clone, Liffe Exchange, has been operating via several websites including www.liffexchange.com, www.liffexchange.org, www.liffexchange.co, www.lifoex.org, www.liffexaccounts.com, www.lifoexaccounts.org, www.lifuturesaccount.com and www.intercommexchange.com. While no address has been provided, the firm’s contact details listed by the FCA are trading@liffexchange.com.

Finance Magnates found that all the associated websites have been suspended. The exact details of this company’s operations are therefore unavailable, however, it is clear that the firm’s operators were attempting to deceive investors into believing that it was LIFFE (London International Financial Futures and Options Exchange), a futures exchange which is now part of ICE following a series of takeovers.

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ICE Futures Europe maintains no relation or affiliation with the clone firm. The FCA has also confirmed that the authorised firm which the fraudsters are claiming to work for has no association with the clone firm Liffe Exchange.

Clone Warning

This latest case is one of many clones that have attempted to scam individuals through the deployment of illicit means and misleading information. Just last week, the UK regulator also red-flagged Gain Capital Ltd, a clone of the FCA-regulated entity, Gain Capital UK, the UK arm of GAIN Capital Holdings which is publicly traded and listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

The FCA added in its statement that clones employ the tactic of adopting a legitimate company’s name when they cold call potential victims, and urges caution in the event they are contacted by anyone claiming to work for the firm in question.

The watchdog has also advised investors to ensure that they only deal with financial firms that are authorised by checking the Financial Services Register.


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