Many baby boomers are moving further out on the risk curve in a desperate attempt to capture returns before retirement. That, say regulators, is exposing them to more investment scams.
The Wall Street Journal reports that securities regulators and prosecutors are “battling what they say is a nationwide surge in investment fraud against baby boomers.” The reason, the paper says, is that investors are “overcompensating” for losses recently suffered, and the number of criminal complaints filed this year is expected to be a record.
“Last year, there were 1,241 criminal complaints, cease-and-desist orders and other regulatory actions launched at the state level involving investors age 50 or older, according to the North American Securities Administrators Association, a group of state regulators. That was more than double the 506 cases in 2009.”
The problem is “rampant” throughout the country, the paper quotes Matt Kitzi, Missouri’s securities commissioner and chairman of the association’s enforcement committee, as saying.