Wisc. Eyes Hedge Fund Scams

Aug 26 2011 | 9:38am ET

Wisconsin is warning its residents to beware of hedge fund and private equity frauds.

The state's Department of Financial Institutions said it has received a number of complaints about potential scams this year.

"Whether described as a hedge fund, trading program, high-yield investment fund or private equity fund, we are seeing a lot of people taking chances in alternative investments," Leslie Van Buskirk, chief enforcement officer of the state's Division of Securities, said. "They are being promised a very large return on investment in a relatively short time frame and told that it is a safe or guaranteed investment." Many may be Ponzi schemes, she added.

The list of possible scams include distressed real estate, energy, gold and precious metals and securitized life settlement contracts, according to the list put together by the North American Securities Administrators Association.

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