Investors warned over cryptocurrency price speculation tools

A maintenance worker cleans the entrance area of the headquarters of the new Financial Conduct Authority in the Canary Wharf business district of London

Investors warned over cryptocurrency price speculation tools

Contracts for Differences (CFDs) are a trading tool.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said cryptocurrency CFDs are "an extremely high-risk, speculative investment" and that only experienced investors "with sophisticated knowledge of financial markets" who "fully understand the risks associated with CFDs and cryptocurrencies" should consider investing in them.

The FCA is concerned that the volatility of cryptocurrencies combined with CFD leverage could lead to investors suffering huge losses.

But the leverage multiplies the impact of price changes on both profits and losses.

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"In most cases, the firm you are buying from benefits when you lose". "They are vulnerable to sharp changes in price due to unexpected events or changes in market sentiment".

High-risk binary options allow people to place bets on whether the value of securities such as shares, commodities, indices and currencies will rise or fall over periods that can be as short as 30 seconds or five minutes.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said it would take over regulating firms that offer binary options, that can lure investors by advertising on social media under an illusion of respectability, from the Gambling Commission on January 3.

Binary options are also regulated as investment products in many other European Union (EU) countries.

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Price transparency: when compared with currencies, there can be more significant variations in the pricing of cryptocurrencies used to determine the value of your CFD position.

"There is a greater risk you will not receive a fair and accurate price for the underlying cryptocurrency when trading", it said.

In particular, if you are contacted out of the blue, pressured to invest quickly or promised returns that sound too good to be true, it could be a scam.

Check the FCA Register of financial services firms - if the firm doesn't appear, you shouldn't trade with that firm, transfer funds, or provide any banking details.

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