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UK Financial Regulator Warns Of Clone Firms

Sandra Kilhof, Reporter, London, 26 November 2013

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The UK Financial Conduct Authority has warned against two firms using names similar to authorised companies but which may in fact be clones.

The [tag|Financial Conduct Authority|]Financial Conduct Authority[/tag] has warned against two firms using names similar to authorised companies but which may in fact be fraudulent clones, coming only days after the watchdog had to warn against a group of companies that were operating without clearance.

According to the financial watchdog, the clones include a firm identifying itself as NCP Financials, Northland or Northland Capital Partners, which has no affiliation with the legitimately-authorised Northland Capital Partners Limited, based in London.

In addition, a separate company calling itself Ava Capital Markets and operating out of addresses in Cambridge and Hong Kong is a clone of the FCA authorised firm Ava Capital Markets Limited, which is based in Dublin.

The regulator also noted that a third firm operating out of identical Cambridge and Hong Kong addresses, and calling itself Edge Capital Markets may also be targeting UK customers without having obtained regulatory permission.

The warnings come only a week after the regulator had to warn against four other financial services firms which may be targeting UK customers despite not having proper authorisation. These include the online firm Curtis Isa; London-based First Capital Wealth, Manchester’s Hometrader Group; and Dominic Nardone trading as Trading Knowledge out of his Margate offices.

Investors who do business with unauthorised firms will not have recourse to the Financial Ombudsman Service or Financial Services Compensation Scheme should things go wrong, the regulator added.

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