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Of furus, finfluencers and a frenetic rush for cover after Rs 6-cr whip on Sundar

Since the Sebi order on PR Sundar, many furus started deleting posts of their courses, workshops and ‘premium groups’ on social-media channels

May 28, 2023 / 06:34 AM IST


Self-styled market gurus are called furus when they are fake. The furus seem to have reacted quickly to the news of the market regulator’s whip finfluencer PR Sundar.

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has in a May 25 order stated that Sundar, his company Mansun Consulting and co-promoter of the company Mangayarkarasi Sundar have settled complaints that the three had been providing investment-advisory services without the requisite registration.

The three have agreed to refrain from buying, selling or otherwise dealing in securities for one year from the passing of the Settlement Order; to pay a settlement amount; and to disgorge more than Rs 6 crore, which includes profit earned from the advisory services and interest on the profit.

Read: PR Sundar settles with Sebi, to keep off trading for a year, cough up over Rs 6 crore

Since this order, many furus have deleted posts of their courses, workshops and ‘premium groups’ on social-media channels. Premium groups are paid subscription channels created on platforms such as Telegram, where the self-styled gurus give stock tips or trading calls, despite not having the mandatory registration. Even ‘courses’ and ‘workshops’ are code for platforms where tips and calls will be provided.

There are no regulations governing courses and workshops on the stock-market, but to give investment advice, a person or an entity has to be registered as an investment advisor under the Sebi (Investment Advisers) Regulation 2013.

On FinTwit, a post shared that a trader-trainer deleted a declaration about a ‘learning group’ that was to start on May 25. But the trainer had forgotten to delete a message that offered a discount on the course, so that offer of a discount was left hanging without a context. The person who shared this development obviously had some colourful words on this half-done job.

“Furus, now there is no point in deleting messages in your telegram channel and premium channel discount schemes etc etc. You all have been caught with your pants down this time,” Fintwit Decoded, a twitter handle that is followed widely, posted. “Shubh Ratri,” it added, pertly.

Telegram channels that advertise ‘guidance’ and tips and are otherwise active in the evening hours fell silent.

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