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Beyond the expected

NRMA IAG Share buying scam

By Pickle 5 November 2007 17

My parents (in Canberra) received a letter from “Share Buying Group Pty Ltd (SBG)” on 31 October 2007. The letter offered them approx $3000 for their IAG shares, the letter also states the shares are worth approx $6500 while the disclosure of the real value is there it is buried in a full page of jargon.

It is a trap for the unwary, you will lose more than half the value of your shares if you agree to the offer.

What’s Your opinion?


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17 Responses to
NRMA IAG Share buying scam
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jemmy 8:25 am 07 Nov 07

It’s a simple offer to buy and there’s not much more ASIC can do, they’ve made Tweed put mkt value in the letter and he’s not coercing the sellers. His approach is similar to spammers: if he gets a 0.5% hit rate, he makes money, so he churns out the bulk letters. To be honest, it’s probably more of a problem in its morality than in actual dollars, as an individual who accepts would be a tiny investor who would only ‘lose’ a few dollars. Bigger investors would be more aware; dementia sufferers shouldn’t be managing their investments at all.

VicePope 8:53 pm 06 Nov 07

While agreeing that RandomGits’ approach has much to commend it as a mechanism to deal with vermin of this kind, I would still suggest the ASIC approach. If the current level of regulation (which may for all I know amount to you must disclose that you are in the quasi-fraud business but you can bury it in a footnote on page 17, in 4 point type, referencing something about catering) is inadequate, it’s the only way that ASIC will find out. Whoever wins the election, the protection of small investors is going to become an issue, as the washup from things like the mezzanine finance industry works through the system.

Pickle 8:21 pm 06 Nov 07

No point letting ASIC know as there is full disclosure, more than enough to satisfy ASIC, just it is buried in so much other muck that it will confuse the average elderly punter.

They target those who may only own a few shares that were handed out by the likes of NRMA. The average novice has no real idea of how to sell shares.

The best we can do is talk about it in places like this, and hope that Google and word of mouth saves a few of the mug punters.

Of course Randomgit has an alternative approach…

boomacat 8:14 pm 06 Nov 07

ps – you should complain to ASIC

boomacat 8:13 pm 06 Nov 07

I think there’s something inserted in the Corporations Act after this David Tweed character came to the attention of ASIC, requiring companies making such offers to note the latest market price for shares when they make these offers.

But, as Pickle points out, there’s nothing to stop them burying it in the fine print, where unsuspecting/vulnerable punters won’t think to look for it.

People like this as no better than common thieves.

VicePope 4:02 pm 06 Nov 07

ASIC has occasionally moved on some scams like this. There was someone called David Tweed who was the subject of some court action for allegedly making misleading offers to relatively low volume unsophisticated shareholders. (See ASIC v National Exchange P/L and David Tweed, the subsequent FFC appeal and the refusal of special leave in the HC. See also the Aevum (FC) cases, National Exchange v Hodder in the Vic SC and the AAT decision in staying the banning of Mr Tweed as a financial adviser). So maybe Pickle should let ASIC know, though I don’t know if this offer is connected with National Exchange.

Pickle 11:04 am 06 Nov 07

They are south of the border down Mexico way.

AKA Melbourne, so Randomgit, “Sic em”

Snarky 9:11 am 06 Nov 07

I go a bit further and hunt them down across continents…
/laughs Now that’s class! Well done Randomgit, you win!

Vic Bitterman 11:23 pm 05 Nov 07

I went further than youse lot.

I took the share scamming scum reply paid envelope, and stuck it to the front door of my neighbours house.

Well, cue to 3 months later, I bought their empty block via an auction and have just put in a pool and a tennis court!

RandomGit 8:21 pm 05 Nov 07

I go a bit further and hunt them down across continents and draw my silvered blade back across their throats so it come away clean and shines in the moonlight as their lifes blood spills upon the floor. Many are the secret ways of the clown.

Cliff 8:08 pm 05 Nov 07

I go a bit further than 54-11. I cut the piece off the prepiad envelope and attach it to a parcel containing all the junj mail I have in the house at the time and post that back to these parasites.

hairy nosed wombat 7:37 pm 05 Nov 07

I put some of my paper for recycling in their envelopes. This saves me having to recycle it

Joe Canberran 6:06 pm 05 Nov 07

54-11, NICE!

54-11 6:03 pm 05 Nov 07

What I do is send all my postage-paid envelopes to them, empty. Just put the scammer’s post paid address on the envelope and pop it in the mailbox. Petty but a little bit of social justice.

shauno 5:56 pm 05 Nov 07

Yep My mother received one about her AMP shares from a group in Melbourne. She has dementia so was nearly taken in by them. They scan the share registry and look for vulnerable people I’m sure of it.

postmanpat 5:05 pm 05 Nov 07

There is a difference between “legitimate” and ethical.

Joe Canberran 2:54 pm 05 Nov 07

I get on of these letters about once a month for various different companies. It’s not even worth looking up the share price anymore to know that I’d make more money on the market than take up on of these offers. There not a scam, legit offers, you’d just be silly to take them.

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