Australians report more than $12m in losses due to investment fraud in July 2019

Maria Nikolova

The biggest losses were reported by people from 25 to 34 years of age, the latest Scamwatch data shows.

Last month turned out to be record-breaking in terms of losses due to fraudulent investment schemes in Australia, according to the latest data provided by Scamwatch, the body operated by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).

The numbers paint a rather gloomy picture, revealing that Australian reported having lost $12.5 million due to investments scams in July 2019. This is way higher than the losses of $5.1 million reported in June 2019. The losses resulting from investment fraud have already exceeded $36.2 million this year.

Image source: Scamwatch.

Those from 25 to 34 years of age were the most active to report investment fraud last month. They were also the age group that reported the biggest losses in July 2019.

The risks of investment scams have been recently underlined by Scamwatch, as the body posted a warning regarding get-rich-quick schemes.

In 2018, Australians filed a total of 3,508 reports about investment scams and reported losses of $38.85 million. This compares to more than $31 million reported lost to investment scams in 2017. Last year, July was the month with the biggest amount of losses ($6 million) too.

The large majority of investment scams are still focused on traditional investment markets like stocks, real estate or commodities. For example, scammers cold call victims claiming to be a stock broker or investment portfolio manager and offer a ‘hot tip’ or inside information on a stock or asset that is supposedly about to go up significantly in value. They will claim what they are offering is low-risk and will provide quick and high returns.

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