Hong Kong’s SFC has issued a reminder to all issuers of SFC-authorised funds about compliance with the Advertising Guidelines Applicable to Collective Investment Schemes Authorised under the Product Codes.  The SFC has noticed from surveillance exercises that some advertisements failed to present a fair and balanced picture of the funds with prominent risk disclosure in compliance with the Advertising Guidelines.  The SFC reminded issuers that presentation of benefits and returns should not be disproportionately larger than the risk disclosures.  Warning statements and footnotes should be well positioned and legible in the context of font sizes used, format and layout of the advertisement and where the advertisement is displayed or published.  Risk disclosures should be reader-friendly and “eye-catching”.  The font size and spacing of the risk disclosure / warning statements should be comparable to the main text of the advertisement.

The SFC will conduct regular surveillance exercises and follow up with individual issuers where necessary.  The SFC regards non-compliance with the Advertising Guidelines as a serious matte