France’s AMF outgoing chairman argues for further measures against binary options

Maria Nikolova

“Should we go beyond banning binary options advertising? I am tempted to say “yes”, Mr Rameix told the French Senate in response to questions about the effect of the ban on digital advertising of high-risk products.

France’s financial markets regulator AMF will soon bid goodbye to its Chairman Gérard Rameix, who is about to relinquish the position at the end of July this year. Mr Rameix is known for his support of the efforts to tackle binary options fraud and that is why this topic was one of the key matters raised in a recent hearing at the French Senate. Mr Rameix responded to a number of questions raised by the Senate’s Finance Commission.

Regarding the ban on binary options, which came into effect thanks to the Sapin 2 law, Mr Rameix was asked whether this is sufficient to protect investors.

To this, he replied:

“Concerning risky products, should we go beyond the ban on their advertising? I am tempted to say “yes”. It is too risky, even with good regulations in place, to provide the general public with access to binary options. It would be better to restrict this access.”

He also commented on the effects of the ban by admitting that the process of high-risk products advertising and offering to French traders has not been brought to an end in the face of a reduction in the number of complaints about such businesses.

Some interesting (however, rather elusive) remarks were made by Mr Rameix with regard to the European policy concerning speculative products. “If we had chosen to ban the advertising, that is because the European law allowed it.”

Sadly, just a couple of days after the hearing of Mr Rameix, AMF made an announcement about lifting the ban on binary options broker 24option.com, a brand of Cypriot investment firm Rodeler. This cast a shadow of doubt on the line of action that the new management of the French regulator will follow. The successor of Mr Rameix has yet to be announced. The period for submitting applications by his potential successors closed right before the announcement about the lifting of the ban on 24option.com.

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