SAINT JOHN (GNB) – As part of Investor Education Month, the Financial and Consumer Services Commission encourages New Brunswickers to take an active role in their investments instead of putting their financial planning on autopilot.

According to the 2016 Canadian Securities Administrators’ Investor Education Study, 40 per cent of New Brunswick investors had not reviewed their investment risk tolerance within the last year. Sixty-four per cent did not check registration before working with their investment professional.

“New Brunswickers need to protect their hard-earned money before and after investing,” said Marissa Sollows, the commission’s senior education co-ordinator. “That means being comfortable in their choice of an investment professional and keeping them up to date on any life changes – like marriage, divorce or employment changes – that may affect their tolerance for risk and the investment products that are right for them.”

The commission will be sharing these messages, along with tips to avoid investment fraud, during a Spend Smart Café from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Oct. 4. at Café au Bout du Monde in Edmundston. The event, being held as part of Investor Education Month, gives investors an opportunity to meet commission employees, ask questions about investing and check their investment professional’s registration while enjoying coffee and sweets.

The commission is also offering a chance to win prizes during Investor Education Month. Players take the Investor Challenge at fortune.fcnb.ca. The contest runs Oct. 3-31, and the top three players at the end of the month will receive prizes.

Both events are part of a broader campaign encouraging New Brunswickers to become informed investors and making them aware of the commission’s free resources and tools.

A key element of the campaign is urging New Brunswickers to take an active role in their investments in two ways: checking their financial professional’s registration and keeping him or her informed of any life changes that would affect their risk tolerance.

“Before choosing an investment professional, New Brunswickers should check the professional’s registration or licensing with the commission,” said Sollows. “A person’s registration is more important than their title because it tells you the type of products or services they are qualified to sell or provide advice on.”

Checking registration and designations for professionals working in the financial services sector can be done online or by calling 1-866-933-2222.

“Knowledge is power when it comes to investing,” said Sollows. “We believe being an informed investor is the best way to protect your hard-earned dollars, and we have many resources available to help you make smart investing decisions.”

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of Provincial legislation that regulates the following sectors:  securities, insurance, pensions, credit unions, trust and loan companies, co-operatives, and a range of other consumer legislation. It is an independent Crown Corporation funded by the regulatory fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors. Educational tools and resources are available online.