The financial regulator said on March 5 it will beef up its monitoring of wrongdoing and illegal practices by unregistered investment advisory firms to better protect retail investors.
The Financial Supervisory Service said it carried out inspections of 262 unregistered investment advisory firms last year to check their compliance with regulations in selling funds and other financial instruments.
The inspection results showed that 26 firms were engaged in illegal practices, including fake advertisements and illegal investment counseling in return for fees, the FSS said. The service said it has referred them to prosecutors for further investigation.
It added it will tighten the monitoring of unregistered investment advisory firms by conducting so-called mystery shopping inspections.
These inspections involve FSS officials disguised as retail investors visiting unregistered investment advisory firms and checking whether they use illegal business practices.
By Ram Garikipati and newswires (firstname.lastname@example.org)