UK regulator upholds complaint against FxPro UK TV ad

Maria Nikolova

The ASA has found that a TV ad for FxPro breaches social responsibility rules as it placed undue emphasis on the potential benefits of investing in a high-risk financial product and targeted young, student clientele.

Recently, FinanceFeeds has informed its readers of the negligible number of rulings by the UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) with regards to Forex advertising. The situation seems to be changing, as today, the ASA announced its ruling against a TV advertisement for FxPro UK.

The TV ad in question was seen on the Bloomberg TV channel on September 29, 2016. The ad began with a scene that featured a young adult who woke up and immediately grabbed a tablet device. The image on the tablet showed a falling EUR/GBP currency rate. The voice-over stated, “What can I say, I am a risk seeker. For me, trading is about being in the moment.” Then the actor arrived at what looked like a college where he checked the currency status. The image on the device indicated that the exchange rate had risen. The voice-over said “Surfing that wave for as long as it holds. And when the price changes direction, I go back in and profit on the way down. Some say it’s too risky. For me, it’s a thrill. Fortune favours the brave, right?” The actor then showed the currency rate to several other students.

There was an on-screen text message throughout the ad stating: “FxPro Trade Forex Like a Pro … Risk Warning: Trading CFDs involves significant risk of loss”.

  • Complaint

The complainant claimed the ad was irresponsible because it was seen to encourage young adults to trade complex, high risk financial products throughout the day.

  • Response by Media

Bloomberg Media responded on behalf of themselves and FxPro UK Ltd. They insisted Bloomberg TV is an established, specialist financial channel and, hence, the ad targeted a specialist audience.

Bloomberg also said that the warnings highlighted the risks associated with CFD trading and therefore the ad was presented in a socially responsible way.

Bloomberg Media had stopped broadcasting the ad while waiting for the ASA decision.

  • ASA Ruling

The regulator upheld the complaint.

The ASA considered that the ad appealed to a younger, student audience that are likely to be inexperienced in trading CFDs. Moreover, the regulator considered the statements in the ad such as “What can I say, I am a risk seeker”, “I go back in and profit on the way down” and “Some say it’s too risky. For me, it’s a thrill. Fortune favours the brave, right?”. These, according to the ASA, created a strong impression that any risks associated with investing could be outweighed by the potential benefits, such as the thrill of investing.

The ASA concluded that regardless of any pre-vetting of potential clients the ad was irresponsible and that it breached BCAP Code rule 1.2 (Social responsibility).

  • Action

The ASA ordered that the ad must not be broadcast again in its current form. FxPro UK Ltd has been told not to place undue emphasis on the benefits of investing in complex, high risk products in future.

    Read this next


    Revolut enables direct transfers from Singapore to Bangladesh and Kenya

    British fintech firm Revolut has broadened its array of services with the introduction of the “Mobile Wallets” feature in Singapore, facilitating direct money transfers to Bangladesh and Kenya.

    Digital Assets

    SBF claims “zero loss” to FTX customers, 100-year sentence is “grotesque”

    Sam Bankman-Fried, the former FTX CEO who was found guilty of fraud charges last year, is facing his sentencing next month. But before that day arrives, he’s making a plea for what he considers a fair shake.

    Digital Assets

    Bitcoin nears $62,000, sparking retail buying frenzy

    Bitcoin dashed past the $61,000 barrier on Wednesday, a peak it hadn’t touched since the waning days of November 2021.

    Market News

    OPEC+ Extension of Oil Output Cut Causes Rally

    The dynamics surrounding crude oil are indeed fascinating, given its unique role as both a globally traded commodity and a vital energy source deeply influenced by the OPEC+ alliance’s decisions.

    Institutional FX

    DKK reports 226% growth in 2023 with eyes on African expansion

    “Our numbers are beginning to show how we are powering, the growth required by emerging markets, and we plan for the success of our strategies to continue to thrive in 2024.”

    Industry News

    ‘WTF’ as in ‘What The Fraud?’, Sumsub’s new podcast on digital fraud

    “We found a lack of informative podcasts talking about digital fraud threats and prevention for business owners. So, we decided to dive in and share our expertise along with industry top minds in the ‘What The Fraud?’ podcast.”

    Digital Assets

    Coin Metrics integrates market data from Cboe Digital

    “We are pleased to work with Coin Metrics and believe that having quality and timely data, and systems to analyze that data, will help crypto markets mature as well as evolve to become a core component of a diversified investment portfolio. We are focused on providing access and solutions to the spot and derivatives crypto market in a way which mirrors an investor’s experience with traditional markets.”


    AU10TIX launches KYB solution to address regulatory requirements

    “Our customers have been requesting a comprehensive KYB solution, because money laundering and fraud have become far too prevalent in the corporate world. Our unified KYB/KYC solution is essential for identifying bad actors and maintaining a safe business environment in 2024.”

    Digital Assets

    Japan Is Rapidly Emerging As A Global Leader In Compliant Crypto Payments

    Japan is often hailed as one of the most forward-thinking nations in the crypto industry, with its government taking a very positive stance on the potential of concepts such as Web3.