RBZ warns against pyramid schemes

26 Aug, 2016 - 00:08 0 Views
RBZ warns against  pyramid schemes

The Chronicle


Bianca Mlilo, Business Reporter
THE Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has warned the public against participating in pyramid and ponzi schemes that fleece them of their hard-earned money by promising “very” high investment returns.

In a statement yesterday, the RBZ said it has come to their attention that MMM Global, whose founder was once convicted and jailed in Russia for defrauding thousands of investors in a ponzi scheme, has established a local chapter called MMM Global Zimbabwe.

It said pyramid and ponzi are fraudulent investment schemes under which existing investors are paid returns, not from genuine market investment of their funds, but from contributions made by new investors, until a point when the scheme can no longer attract new investors.

“RBZ wishes to warn members of the public against participating in pyramid and ponzi schemes that come in various forms and guises and are luring people to invest or contribute their hard-earned money, promising very high investment returns.

“MMM Global Zimbabwe isn’t a registered or regulated entity in the country. It advertises its operations through a website and through recruiting agents operating in various centres of the country.

“It has no official offices or office bearers,” the Reserve Bank said.

Since MMM Global Zimbabwe was not registered under any law, RBZ said its activities were not regulated or supervised by any authority in the country, adding that the public was being advised against putting their hard-earned money in this or similar structures.

“Those who invest in such schemes do so at their own risk and may find themselves without legal recourse when they lose their funds.”

The scheme advertises itself as a “mutual aid fund and a social financial network” under which recruited members contribute their “spare money” to “assist” others, and are promised investment returns ranging from 20 percent to 100 percent per month.

“Testimonies by the privileged early members who would have benefited from the scheme, are often used to lure new recruits. Ponzi and pyramid schemes aren’t sustainable because, eventually and inevitably, they run out of new recruits leading to their collapse, with most contributors losing their funds. This has already happened in a number of countries where MMM Global has chapters,” it said. — @BiancaMlilo

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