Investor Alert: ASC and First Calgary Financial warn public of high-yield investment scheme offered by offshore company Profitable Sunrise

CALGARY, March 11, 2013 /CNW/ - The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) is warning investors about a "high-yield investment" scheme offered through a promotional website for an offshore company called Profitable Sunrise. A high-yield investment scheme involves an investment that promises unrealistically high returns while disclosing few details on how such returns are generated. The Profitable Sunrise website offers investors various plans to earn daily interest of 1.6 to 2.7 per cent through short-term loans to businesses.

The ASC is issuing this investor alert after it received reports from First Calgary Financial that several of its Calgary customers have attempted to withdraw significant amounts of funds from their accounts for wire transfers to the Czech Republic. The ASC confirmed that the North Carolina Securities Division recently issued a Temporary Order to Cease and Desist against Profitable Sunrise and its agents. Albertans should be aware that Profitable Sunrise and its agents are not registered to sell securities in Alberta. The company and its principals appear to be located in the U.K.

"Our front-line employees are trained to identify suspicious transactions by members so that we may be able to stop them from becoming the possible victims of an investment scam," says Debbie Pratt, Vice President of Retail Banking for First Calgary Financial.  "In this case, we noticed a trend and a quick call to the ASC allowed us to alert our members."

"It's important for investors to know that there is no such thing as a high return, no risk investment," says Bill Rice, Chair and CEO of the ASC. "If you are persuaded to send money overseas, it may be difficult, if not impossible to get it back if something goes wrong."

If you have been contacted by someone claiming to represent Profitable Sunrise, please refer to the North Carolina Securities Division's website (www.secretary.state.nc.us/sec/) for more information on the Temporary Order to Cease and Desist <http://www.secretary.state.nc.us/sec/actions.aspx> against Roman Novak, Radoslave Noval and Inter Reef Ltd d/b/a Profitable Sunrise. In the meantime, the ASC urges the public to be wary of Profitable Sunrise and other high-yield investment schemes.

The ASC urges investors to familiarize themselves with some common red flags of investing and offers the Red Flags of Investing factsheet.  If you unsure about an investment opportunity, consult a registered financial adviser or obtain independent legal advice before making a decision or handing over any money.  Do more research using the resources of the Alberta Securities Commission by visiting www.albertasecurities.com or contacting ASC Public Inquiries at 1-877-355-4488 or inquiries@asc.ca.

The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) is the regulatory agency responsible for administering the province's securities laws.  It is entrusted to foster a fair and efficient capital market in Alberta and to protect investors.

First Calgary Financial is a full service financial institution.  As Alberta's second-largest credit union with over $3 billion in assets, First Calgary Financial is Calgary's only locally-owned and operated credit union.

SOURCE Alberta Securities Commission



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