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FMA puts temporary ban on David McEwan and associates

The Financial Markets Authority has imposed a temporary order forbidding David McEwan and all entities associated with him from offering any financial products, communicating with anyone about those offers or accepting any new deposits or investments.

Friday, November 10th 2023, 9:37AM

by Jenny Ruth

The interim order will remain in force until Dec 21 while the market conduct regulator assesses whether it should make a permanent stop order against McEwan.

Described variously as a financial writer or analyst, McEwan used to run IRG, now owned by Brent King, which used to produce an annual yearbook on NZX-listed companies, but which now operates as a stock broker.

McEwan's associates included in the temporary ban include Stockfox, Cosmopolitan Holdings, Strategy Services, Fund Administration Services, Digitech 1, Startight Holdings and Innovative Capital.

Stockfox, for example, bills itself as offering “expert help with deciding what shares to buy and when to sell with Stockfox — a virtual share market advisor in your pocket.”

The FMA says the stop order is a regulatory tool to stop or prevent advertising or disclosure “that is false or misleading, or is likely to confuse consumers or investors, on matters that influence their investment decision.”

It says it is concerned that McEwan and his associated entities have been making offers of financial products that “are false or misleading, or likely to mislead or confuse, and contains a material misdescription or material error” and don't comply with the Financial Markets Conduct Act or its associated regulations.

“There is a real risk of investor harm arising from activities of Mr McEwan and associates that appear to be dishonest and misleading,” the regulator says.

It says it is contacting investors to make sure they are aware of the order.

Tags: FMA

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