Finfluencers are not always neutral, warns AFM


Finfluencers are not always neutral, the Dutch Authority for the Financial Markets (AFM) has warned.

In its first investigation into people who give investment tips online and via social media, it said that they do not always comply with strict financial rules ‘because they make ill-considered recommendations and provide investment advice.’

It added: ‘They also promote risky products and are not always transparent about their own interests and the remuneration they receive.’

Although the body said the amateur tipsters make investing more accessible, they do not always put the interests of their followers first, few post neutrally or are transparent about their interests, and they may promote risky products.

Some may provide investment advice without a licence, which is prohibited. Dozens of consumers have complained to the AFM after losing money, having followed the advice of online tipsters.

Recently, it issued a warning about Grinta Invest, an illegal firm that uses Dutch finfluencers.

The market conduct authority said it has contacted known finfluencers to remind them of the rules, including a ban on referral fees. It has the power to pursue those breaking the law and impose fines.

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