Monday, September 29, 2008

State Securities Regulator Cautions Investors, Offers Tips Against Hasty Response to Market Turmoil

The state's chief securities regulator today cautioned New Mexico investors against making sudden and uninformed decisions in response to the current market volatility and unprecedented turmoil on Wall Street.

"We know from past experience that con artists follow the headlines to exploit the worries of everyday investors," said Bruce R. Kohl, director of the New Mexico Regulation and Licensing Department Securities Division.

"In times of confusion and uncertainty, there are always those who will try to prey on the investing public," Kohl said. "Investors should resist the temptation to make hasty decisions about their investments or finances. And now is the time to be especially wary of unsolicited financial advice offering new investment opportunities."

Kohl urged investors to make informed decisions about their long-term financial holdings and to seek the advice of a trusted investment adviser or financial planner before making any sudden moves with their money.

Kohl offered the following tips for investors:

  1. Request written information that fully explains the investment, such as a prospectus or offering circular. The documentation should contain enough clear and accurate information to allow you or your financial adviser to evaluate and verify the particulars of the investment.
  2. Contact the Securities Division at 800-704-5533 to find out if the investment firm and sales professional are licensed in the State of New Mexico, and if the investment product offered is registered with the state.
  3. Get a professional, trusted third-party opinion when presented with investment opportunities that seem to offer unusually high returns in comparison to other investment options
  4. If you participate in an employer-sponsored retirement plan, such as a 401(k) plan, get unbiased advice and guidance before making any significant changes to your long-term savings and investment strategy.

The Regulation and Licensing Department Securities Division protects New Mexicans from fraud and financial abuse by licensing investment professionals, registering securities offerings made in the state and investigating financial fraud and other violations of the state securities laws.

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