Warning to Shareholders
Warning to shareholders regarding investment scams
Persimmon shareholders have reported that they have received unsolicited telephone calls from fraudulent companies, offering to buy shares at inflated prices. We suspect the calls are part of a scam and Persimmon would like to remind its shareholders to remain vigilant at all times.
Share scams are often run from 'boiler rooms' where fraudsters cold-call investors offering them worthless, overpriced or even non-existent shares, or offer to buy their shares at a much higher price than the market value.
Fraudsters usually cold-call but contact can also come by email, post, word of mouth or at a seminar or exhibition. Scams are often advertised online too.
Fraudsters sometimes contact shareholders offering to sell and buy shares using the names, registration numbers and addresses of authorised firms and individuals in an attempt to convince consumers of their legitimacy. While they promise high returns, those who invest usually end up losing their money.
How to protect yourself
Information on how to protect yourself from investment scams and how to check you’re dealing with an authorised firm is available on the FCA ScamSmart website.
Scams are increasingly sophisticated. Fraudsters can be articulate and financially knowledgeable, with credible websites, testimonials and materials that are hard to distinguish from the real thing. But if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Fraudsters will often:
- contact you out of the blue.
- apply pressure to invest quickly.
- downplay the risks to your money.
- promise tempting returns that sound too good to be true, however they may also offer realistic returns in an attempt to seem more legitimate.
- say that they’re only making the offer available to you or even ask you to not tell anyone else about it.
- offer to share fake reviews or claim that other clients have invested with them.
- speak with authority and claim to be from a regulated firm.
How to avoid investment scams
- Reject unexpected offers.
- Check if the firm is FCA authorised.
- Check it’s not a “Clone Firm”, pretending to be a genuine firm.
- Check the FCA Warning List.
- Get impartial advice before investing – don’t use an adviser from the firm that contacted you.
How to report it
If you are suspicious, report it
You can report the firm or scam to the FCA by contacting their Consumer Helpline on 0800 111 6768 or by using their online reporting form on the FCA ScamSmart website.
If you’ve given your bank account details to a firm you think may be operating a scam, tell your bank immediately.
If you’ve lost money in a scam, contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or www.actionfraud.police.uk.