News Release

Offshore firm settles with the ASC for unregistered trading

Jan 20, 2020

CALGARY – January 20, 2020 - The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) has concluded a Settlement Agreement with Ava Trade Ltd. (Ava Trade), a company based in the British Virgin Islands, for acting as a dealer without being registered in accordance with Alberta securities laws.

In the settlement agreement, Ava Trade admitted to engaging in unregistered trading of contracts for difference (CFDs). The company operated an unregistered online trading platform over a period of three years that allowed Alberta residents to trade CFDs, which are derivative products that track the price of underlying assets, including cryptocurrencies, foreign exchange market, equities and commodities. As part of the settlement agreement, Ava Trade paid the ASC $30,000 plus disgorgement of $213,428 representing its net revenue on these trades less 20 per cent as credit for exemplary cooperation.

This agreement was concluded under the ASC Policy 15-601 Credit for Exemplary Cooperation in Enforcement Matters.  "Our goal with this Policy is to encourage individuals and entities to self-report securities misconduct to the ASC and provide full and timely cooperation in investigations and proceedings," said Cynthia Campbell, Director, Enforcement.  "This enables market participants to address securities violations with efficiency and greater certainty. Additionally, taking this approach improves enforcement effectiveness, which leads to better protection of investors and our capital market."

The ASC gratefully acknowledges the assistance of the British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission in this matter.

A copy of the Settlement Agreement is available on the ASC website at albertasecurities.com.

The ASC is the regulatory agency responsible for administering the province's securities laws. It is entrusted with fostering a fair and efficient capital market in Alberta and with protecting investors. As a member of the Canadian Securities Administrators, the ASC works to improve, coordinate and harmonize the regulation of Canada's capital markets.

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Hilary McMeekin
Communications Manager
403-592-8186

ASC Public Inquiries
Toll Free: 1-877-355-4488