Beware! Richardson Lewis is an offshore broker! Your investment may be at risk.
RECOMMENDED FOREX BROKERS
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Open trading accounts with at least two brokers.
At first glance, the Richardson Lewis website looks respectable and we might believe it was a genuine forex broker if we didn’t know better. But even a superficial inspection shows that we are dealing with yet another online scam. In this review, we’ll take a detailed look at the clues that Richardson Lewis is not a legitimate financial services provider and should be avoided.
RICHARDSON LEWIS REGULATION AND SAFETY OF FUNDS
Legitimate forex brokers provide clear and detailed information about the legal entity that owns and operates them, where it is based, what licences it has and which regulators oversee its activities. Lack of such details or improper presentation of them are always a red flag that we are probably dealing with a scam.
The website provides a contact address in Singapore and contact numbers for the broker’s representatives in the UK and Canada.
These are regulated jurisdictions where such an anonymous website could not legally provide financial services. No authorised broker using the Richardson Lewis trade name and domain can be found in the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) database. For its part, UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) expressly warns that Richardson Lewis is not a licensed broker:
If you want to trade on financial markets without being scammed, you can turn to some of the legitimate brokers that actually operate from established financial hubs like the UK. These brokers have to meet stringent requirements for financial stability and transparency of operations imposed by the FCA. They must provide clients with negative balance protection and to participate in a guarantee fund that covers up to GBP 85,000 of a client’s investment should the broker go into insolvency. These brokers are also required to keep their clients’ money segregated from their own operating funds in separate bank accounts.
RICHARDSON LEWIS TRADING SOFTWARE
Richardson Lewis claims to offer clients a web-based trading platform, but we have not been able to confirm whether this is true. At the time of writing this review, attempts to register a new account ended with an unexplained error message.
It should be noted that the presence of some kind of trading software is no guarantee that this is a genuine broker. Financial scammers often use trading platforms to fool their victims that their money is actually being invested.
If you use the services of a licensed broker, you will get the opportunity to use established software with advanced features and versions for all types of devices and operating systems. The most widely used trading platforms in the industry are MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5). These platforms have established themselves as industry standard because they offer a wide range of features, including a variety of options for customization, multiple account usage, designing and implementing custom scripts for automated trading and backtesting trade strategies.
RICHARDSON LEWIS TRADING CONDITIONS
On the Richardson Lewis website we see a list of four types of trading accounts, but their descriptions do not give clear information about the trading conditions. Only an extremely high minimum deposit of 5,000 USD is specified, as well as a commission of up to 1%, without explaining what exactly this commission is charged on.
When you visit the website of a legitimate broker you will find proposals for different types of trading accounts suitable for investors with different preferences, as well as detailed descriptions of trading parameters – minimum deposit, order execution method, tradable financial instruments, leverage, spread, swap, etc.Most licensed brokers allow novice investors to start trading with a low minimum deposit of 50-100 USD, and often even less.
RICHARDSON LEWIS DEPOSIT/WITHDRAW METHODS AND FEES
Wire transfer is mentioned in the Richardson Lewis Terms and Conditions, but there is no specification of what payment methods are available.
Legitimate brokers typically offer clients a wide choice of transparent payment methods, including bank transfer, credit/debit cards and established e-wallets such as PayPal, Skrill, Neteller or POLi. Scammers generally prefer cryptocurrencies because these transactions are not subject to refunds.
In the Terms and Conditions we find typically fraudulent tricks designed to block any withdrawal requests. Richardson Lewis charges exorbitant withdrawal fees if the client has not met the minimum traded volume requirements. These requirements are described in a deliberately confusing way, but it is clear from the example given that a deposit of 10 000 USD requires the trading of 1 00 standard lots, or 10 million currency units.
In addition to this, there is an inactive account fee of 50 USD per month, which starts charging after three months of inactivity.
HOW DOES THE SCAM WORK
Many people are looking for ways to make money passively, but do not have the necessary knowledge to invest in the financial markets themselves. This makes them a target for the many online scammers posing as brokers. If you come across some of them and give them your contacts, you will be contacted by skilled scam artists who will assure you that they can take on the incomprehensible aspects of investing for you. You will only be required to invest and take profits.
But when you try to collect even just a fraction of your money, it will turn out to be impossible. Your supposed profits will suddenly evaporate, or you’ll find that you have to meet impossible traded volume requirements first. Fraudsters often insert huge withdrawal fees into client agreements amounting to 10%, 20% or even more. You won’t be able to hold scammers accountable because they hide behind fake names and shell-companies offshore. Scammers also typically use non-refundable payment methods.
WHAT TO DO WHEN SCAMMED
First of all, you should be very careful not to fall straight into the clutches of other scammers. Another common scam is to promise money recoveries from fake brokers for an upfront fee.
If you used a credit or debit card for the transactions, you can charge a chargeback. Visa and MasterCard have a long period in which they allow such requests – 540 days. But keep in mind that fraudsters can dispute if you have provided them with a copy of your ID and proof of address. It would also be helpful if you alerted the authorities in your country and other people online to the activities of the scammers.