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UK’s financial watchdog goes real time to catch online criminals

Britain’s financial regulator has to make daily sweeps of the internet. This sweep is to warn about online scams in real time and keep pace with fraudsters who are often based outside the country. Mark Steward, the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) director for enforcement, said that the warnings have become a cornerstone of the watchdog’s fight against a surge in financial scams after this pandemic sent more people online.

The FCA issued 1,200 consumer warnings last year. Those were scams advertised via social media platforms by fake companies which are not regulated by the watchdog, said Steward in parliament’s Treasury Select Committee. He said that they are now issuing warnings straight away and they are conducting sweeps several times a day of the internet, issuing warnings within 24 hours so that they are up to date.

The number of victims can be reduced by faster warnings. Steward said that banks should be checking who is on the list in case they are customers, meaning lenders could be unwittingly aiding fraud by taking payments on behalf of criminals. Online financial scams are not as widespread as traditional banking fraud. Because it was easy getting passwords from customers and so it was more prevailed. According to the UK’s Action Fraud, last year, victims of investment scams who referred to a social media platform lost 63 million pounds.

The FCA is also paying Google to publish the regulator’s warnings. Britain has proposed an “online harms” law. The FCA wants such checks to be made obligatory under the new law. Steward said that the irony of them having to pay social media to publish warnings about advertising they are receiving money from is not lost on them. Lawmaker Anthony Browne urged Steward not to be overawed by the deep pockets of social media firms. Google has said it has robust financial products and services policies, and has been adding more requirements on advertisers.

Steward said the ball was now in the court of social media firms. And so, they will come up with ways to tackle scams. He added that they shall see how successful they really are. The proof will be in the pudding. If not, then they are going to have to take action of a different kind.

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Financial service providers falling short

PA Consulting (PA) has published new global research. That is revealing an overwhelming majority of people expect sustainable financial services to become the norm (93%). According to the research, consumers are currently facing a critical knowledge gap. This should serve as a wake-up call to financial services providers.

PA surveyed 3,500 consumers globally. Also, consumers of all age groups and geographies are looking to live, shop, and bank more sustainably. Most consumers do not realise how much of an impact their financial decisions can have on sustainability. A lack of education (57%), the research revealed that pricing (62%); trust (57%); availability (56%) and accessibility (55%) are key barriers to adoption of sustainable finance products. Financial service firms must urgently address gaps in knowledge and consumer trust to drive adoption. Mark Lancelott, sustainability expert at PA Consulting, says that their survey reveals a worrying gap between consumers’ expectations of their financial services providers and their confidence in, and understanding of, the products currently available to them.

Consumers don’t realise how big an impact their financial choices can have on their ambitions. Jason Hill, financial services expert at PA Consulting, added that the pressures to meet the challenge of making sustainable finance mainstream by 2025 will come not just from consumer demand. There will be new non-financial reporting requirements and rules to prevent green-washing coming into force imminently.

Their research highlights the pent-up demand for financial products and services. Failing to meet expectations will compromise customer retention. There are three core initiatives, such as build credibility, educate, and innovate. It will take investment and ingenuity, but it is critical the industry pivots, now.

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Eightcap Launches Impressive Award-Winning Crypto Derivatives Offering with Ultra-Low Spreads

Eightcap, a multi-award-winning CFD broker, has announced the launch of over 250 Cryptocurrency derivatives, allowing its clients to diversify their crypto portfolio via the MT4 and MT5 platforms. This new launch positions the broker as the new home of crypto derivatives.

Not only has Eightcap’s latest crypto launch surpassed what other derivative providers are currently offering, but the broker has recently been recognised as the Best Crypto Broker at the AtoZ Markets annual awards 2021, beating the likes of Robinhood.

The launch has been a much-awaited solution to the current struggles crypto derivative traders face at exchanges and brokers. For example, the reduction of withdrawal limits due to regulatory issues has meant crypto derivative traders have struggled to access their funds. With Eightcap, clients will be able to buy or sell a wide range of Cryptocurrency CFDs, including crypto-crosses and crypto indices. Its clients will also have multiple funding options and be able to make swift withdrawals.

Opening an account with the broker is a seamless and straightforward process and can be done in three easy steps. Once the crypto derivatives trader has verified their account, they can fund their account via BTC, Tether, PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, Credit/Debit Card, Bank Wire Transfer, and more.

“Our vision at Eightcap is to provide a new home for Crypto derivative traders by providing an unparalleled offering that includes the largest crypto derivative library paired with ultra-low spreads and fast withdrawal options,” said Joel Murphy, CEO, Eightcap. “The regulatory issues crypto exchanges such as Binance are facing means traders are left with unnecessary worries about their funds and if they can withdraw them. With us, Crypto derivative traders can have a seamless experience from the moment they open an account to when they want to withdraw their funds.”

What makes this offering even more attractive is the broker’s competitively low spreads on over 250+ crypto derivatives. For example, crypto derivative traders can start trading coins such as Bitcoin from 12 p/coin, Ether from 0.45 p/coin, Cardano from 0.004 p/coin and Dogecoin from 0.0002 p/coin.

Marcus Fetherston, Director of Operations at Eightcap, added, “The Eightcap offering focuses solely on creating regulated leveraged derivative trading opportunities for Cryptocurrency traders, that offers more security than traditional offshore exchange platforms. We are thrilled to provide a solution that meets the needs of crypto derivative traders so that they can gain the best possible trading experience.”

Crypto derivative traders currently with other Crypto exchanges and brokers have access to a limited range of Crypto derivatives with wide spreads. When switching to Eightcap, Crypto derivative traders will choose from the most extensive Cryptocurrency offering, experience tight spreads, and deposit and withdraw with ease, with a regulated broker.

Retail traders can rest assured that they are trading with a reputable broker. Eightcap has been operating since it was founded in Melbourne, Australia, in 2009. The broker offers its clients access to over 400 financial instruments across Forex, Indices, Commodities and Cryptocurrency CFDs. This year Eightcap has launched several new tools and products and, as a result, has been awarded Best Forex Educational Resources – Global and the Best Trading Support in Europe.

About Eightcap

Eightcap is an online financial trading company based in Melbourne, Australia. Eightcap is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CYSEC) and the Securities Commission of The Bahamas (SCB). The rapidly growing broker provides online Forex and CFD trading solutions via the award-winning MT4 and MT5 trading platforms. Supported with competitive pricing, outstanding client support, and superior execution technology, Eightcap offers trading to retail and institutional clients across Forex, Indices, Commodities, and Shares markets.

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Cryptoization threatens financial stability

The International Monetary Fund said that the advent of digital currencies in emerging markets could spark cryptoization of local economies. This is upsetting financial stability. Bitcoin and its kin have soared in price and popularity over the last year. This can be seen in economies such as Vietnam, India and Pakistan. U.S. blockchain researcher Chainalysis summarized this.

Cryptocurrencies offer a cheaper and quicker way of sending money across borders. Digital tokens such as stablecoins helps in protecting the savings from high fluctuations in local currencies. El Salvador became the first country in the world to adopt bitcoin as legal tender. This happened in last September, and that too because of the backers. They tipped the experiment to lower costs for billions of dollars of remittances, which were sent to the Central American nation. The IMF said that unsound macroeconomic policies and inefficient payment systems are among the drivers of cryptocurrency adoption.

The exact level of adoption of crypto in emerging economies was hard to gauge. Low credibility of central banks and weak domestic banking systems also contribute to growing crypto use. Dollarization is where a foreign currency is used instead of a domestic currency. The instability of a domestic currency is the driver of this process. Wide adoption of stablecoins could also pose significant challenges. This is by reinforcing existing dollarization forces as per the IMF statement. It mentioned that the dollarization can impede central banks’ effective implementation of monetary policy. This also leads to financial stability risks through currency mismatches. The IMF added that the Cryptoization could also become a threat to fiscal policy.

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