9 Nov 2023

Auckland investment advisor issued interim stop order by FMA for 'dishonest' activities

8:34 pm on 9 November 2023
David McEwen

David McEwen. Photo: Screenshot / YouTube

The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) has issued an interim stop order against former journalist turned investment advisor David McEwen, over alleged dishonest and misleading activities.

The FMA said it was concerned McEwen and entities associated with him may have been offering financial products that were false or misleading, contained a "material misdescription or material error", and did not comply with the law.

McEwen was the founder of investment advisory Stockfox and had been a regular commentator in the media over a number of years.

According to his LinkedIn profile, prior to his investment career, he had a career in business journalism at well-known publications, including the National Business Review, Reuters and the Financial Times.

The FMA did not go into details about why it issued the order and a spokesperson declined further comment.

McEwen as been approached for comment.

"The FMA considers that making this order is in the public interest because there is real risk of investor harm arising from activities of Mr McEwen and associates that appear to be dishonest and misleading and not to comply with the FMC [Financial Markets Conduct] Act," it said.

The interim stop order would be in effect until 21 December; the FMA said it was considering whether to make it permanent.

In the meantime, the interim order banned McEwen and entities associated with him, from activities such as accepting applications for financial products and accepting new investments or deposits into products offered by McEwen.

"The interim stop order also prohibits Mr McEwen, entities associated with him, and any persons employed by him, from making and/or distributing any restricted communication in respect of any direct, indirect or intended offer of financial products by or for Mr McEwen and entities associated with him to any person," the FMA said.

The entities associated with McEwen were Stockfox Limited, Cosmopolitan Holdings Limited, Strategy Services Limited, Fund Administration Services Limited, Digitech 1 Limited, M and A Holdings 1 Limited, M and A Holdings 2 Limited, Agtech 1 Limited, Agtech 2 Limited, Agtech 3 Limited, Startight Holdings Limited, Innovative Capital Limited, and McEwen's Limited Partnership.

The FMA said it was contacting investors to ensure they were aware of the order.

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