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Press Release - 24 June 2002

COMMISSION PROPOSALS TO KEEP FINANCIAL SERVICES ADVERTISEMENTS ACCURATE

New proposals to extend Jersey's powers to set minimum standards with regard to financial service advertisements have been put to the Island's finance industry and public in a consultation document issued by the Jersey Financial Services Commission.

The proposals, if adopted, would strengthen the powers the Commission currently has to protect the Island's reputation and reduce the risk to the public.

Jersey's Financial Services (Jersey) Law already insists that an advertisement does not contain a statement, promise or forecast which is untrue and or misleading. The proposals provide more detail and greater certainty. They will apply to all registered persons under the Financial Services (Jersey) Law 1998.

The proposals, together with current arrangements, will ensure the public know the origin of advertising information. This would mean that all Jersey businesses would be required to keep a record of all financial services advertisements issued. Additionally, all financial advertisements would be required to:

include the identification of the person who placed it (or caused it to be issued);

identify any significant risks to the investor from the service or product being promoted;

make claims only where they can be substantiated;

state facts only where they can be demonstrated to be true;

avoid misleading omissions of relevant information; and

refrain from implying that the content and format of the advertisement had been approved by the Commission.

Richard Pratt, Director General of the Jersey Financial Services Commission, said today: " Advertisements can come in a variety of forms from a complicated prospectus produced in the financial press to a simple newsletter. The Commission already has powers to monitor advertising in relation to financial services. These new proposals, if adopted, will give more detail to existing requirements and ensure that both the Island's reputation and, the public are protected from carelessly drafted copy."

The consultation paper on Advertising Standards can be viewed by clicking here.

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