Montréal – The Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) would like to provide an update on claims for compensation from clients who lost money in the Norbourg affair. To date, we have received over 600 claims files for the Fonds d’indemnisation des services financiers. We are in the process of doing a preliminary analysis of the information provided by investors. The AMF intends to respond to each request.
The AMF would like to remind the following facts. The Fonds d’indemnisation was created by the Act respecting the distribution of financial products and services to protect consumers from fraud and embezzlement by representatives to whom they may have entrusted funds. It is also important to remember that the Fonds d’indemnisation is capitalized based on the risk involved in distribution, not on the risk involved in the management of mutual funds. In fact the Fonds d’indemnisation is financed solely by contributions paid by the firms and representatives governed by the Act respecting the distribution of financial products and services. The AMF acts as the trustee for the Fonds d’indemnisation.
Vincent Lacroix was in fact a representative and owner of “Gestion du patrimoine Tandem”, a group savings plan brokerage firm. All of the facts must be reviewed before any conclusion can be reached as to the existence of fraud and fraudulent practices in the distribution of the funds at issue. Allegations involving a firm’s owner do not imply that the firm’s staff is guilty of dishonest transactions. As the financing behind this affair is highly complex, we must take the time required to elicit all evidence in this case.
However, specific conditions must be met before the Fonds d’indemnisation can analyze a claim. First, the claim for compensation must have been sworn to and provide:
- The name of the firm and representative that sold the funds
- The amount claimed
- The dates on which the funds were purchased
- The facts surrounding the purchase of the funds
The claim must be accompanied by all documents supporting the facts stated, such as:
- Copy of account statements setting out the investments made
- Copy of the subscription form(s) signed when the funds were acquired
- Copy of the fund redemption form, if applicable
To date, the claims we have received do not contain all the information required to perform a full analysis of the facts. Therefore, we recommend that the compensation claim form be used. It is available on our Web site.
At this stage of the inquiry, we must stress that there is nothing to suggest there has been any misappropriation of funds by the overall distribution network. Consequently, only claims submitted by investors who acquired funds through group savings plan brokerage firms controlled by Vincent Lacroix will be reviewed at this time. It should also be stated that investors who purchased Norbourg funds through a securities dealer with an unrestricted practice (not subject to the Act respecting the distribution of financial products and services) cannot be compensated by the Fonds d’indemnisation.
Finally, it is important to note that the AMF’s primary mission is to protect consumers of financial products and services. If our inquiry determines that fraud occurred in the sale of Norbourg funds to some investors, the AMF will take the steps required to compensate them as provided in the rules governing the Fonds d’indemnisation.
The Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) is the regulatory and oversight body for Québec’s financial sector.
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Philippe Roy (514) 940-2176
Issuers, dealers, advisers and representatives: (877) 525-0337, choose option 9 for English, then 1 for industry
Consumers and investors: (877) 525-0337, choose option 9 for English, then 8 for consumers