France’s ARPP issues only one opinion on ads of financial products in 2016

Maria Nikolova

France’s Jury of Advertising Ethics issued a total of 51 opinions on advertising in 2016, and non-compliance with financial products advertising regulations was the motif for only one opinion.

France has made the headlines thanks to the introduction of the Sapin 2 law, which, inter alia, prohibits the advertising of high-risk financial products such as binary options and CFDs with high leverage. The latest numbers provided by France’s advertising self-regulatory organization ARPP indicate that advertising of financial products was not amid the key topics for the body in 2016.

ARPP’s Annual Activity Report for 2016, which was published today, shows that ARPP’s Jury of Advertising Ethics (also known as JDP) issued 51 opinions in response to complaints received in 2016. Out of these, non-compliance with financial products advertising regulations was the motif for only one decision. Alcohol and beauty products advertising were higher on the agenda than financial products, according to the report.

The report also notes that advertising industry in France is over-regulated and new rules come about way too often. The new rules for financial products advertising have also added their weight to this burden.

Under the Sapin 2 law, all sorts of digital advertising of harmful financial products like binary options and high-leverage CFDs are prohibited. The ban also covers sponsorship deals that result in advertising of high-risk products. The latter, however, has not stopped some binary options brands from continuing their sports partnerships and targeting French investors with the help of these ads.

An ARPP newsletter from earlier this year shows that demand for legal consultations provided by the Jury of Advertising Ethics marked a rise of 4.9% in the 11 months to the end of November 2016, compared to the same period a year earlier. In 2016, the Jury provided 14,656 consultations compared to 13,972 consultations in the corresponding period in 2015.

The sharpest increase was seen in consultations concerning sponsorships – whooping 300% year over year. Other steep rises were registered in demand for consultations concerning advertising in movies and the Internet.

The newsletter did not mention any direct link between the rise in volume of consultation requests and the Sapin 2 law.

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