SEC joins FINRA In Cautioning Investors About Risks of Leveraged ETFs

Earlier this week, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued a joint warning cautioning investors on the dangers in investing in leveraged ETFs and inverse ETFs. The two regulators issued the warning because they “believe individual investors may be confused about the performance objectives of leveraged and inverse exchange-traded funds (ETFs).”

The warning also notes that leveraged ETFs are designed to achieve their investment performance objectives on a daily basis, rather than a long-term basis as with typical exchange-traded and mutual funds. In fact, the performance of these funds can vary significantly from their stated objectives over long-term periods. The joint warning contains a detailed description of leveraged and ETFs, as well as examples of how the funds generally operate. The SEC also included a link to a NYSE “Informed Investor” Bulletin entitled “What You Should Know About Exchanged Traded Funds.”

While this warning is welcome, it unfortunately has come after many investors have sustained significant losses in these risky and unsuitable investments. As previously discussed in this blawg, FINRA has already declared that leveraged ETFs are typically unsuitable for retail investors. The most popular of these investments are managed by Rydex, Direxion, and ProShares. If your stockbroker or financial advisor has sold you any leveraged ETFs, or purchased any leveraged ETFs in your accounts, and you have lost money on these investments, you may be entitled to recover these losses. The Kueser Law Firm represents investors who were sold leveraged and inverse ETFs. If you are concerned that your investments have been mismanaged, contact us to learn more about your rights.

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Article by Jason M. Kueser

Jason M. Kueser has spent his legal career representing individuals, groups, and companies in litigation and arbitration. In addition, he has, and continues to represent clients in class action litigation. Jason is currently admitted to the Missouri Bar, the Kansas Bar, as well as the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri, the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas, and the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. In addition, he is a member of the American Bar Association, the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, and PIABA (Private Investors Arbitration Bar Association). He currently serves on the editorial board of the PIABA Bar Journal. Jason has also written articles that have been published in law reviews, industry legal publications, and newspapers.
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