A Question of Trust

On the weekend I received an email from an individual via my Facebook page which at first glance was rather concerning to say the least.  The individual claimed LTG GoldRock; AB and all who are associated with the company are scammers of the first order, and provided a website link to an LTG GoldRock Review website.  Basically the individual was informing me to definitely not trust AB or LTG GoldRock in any way shape or form.  I clicked on the website link and started reading and I must say the reviews and posts were very negative indeed.  I then did a Google search and found another couple of websites where again, more than the majority of the reviews were highly negative, however I noted the posts were very old.

To say my heart started beating rather rapidly – have I been scammed?  Have I lost my hard earned $$$.  Did I not undertake a careful and thorough due diligence process before signing up as a member? Are these individuals right?  I decided to sleep on it and review everything the next day.  The following is what I have found.  Please note:  I would encourage you to verify the information presented below for yourself.

The company is indeed registered with ASIC (Australian Securities Investment Commission) – License No.: 286510; ACN Number:  147 039 156 ABN Number: 19147039156. As part of this registration the principle representatives are, including their relevant license numbers are:

  • Chief – AKA Lazaros Barkados        414158                  Bundoora Victoria.
  • AB – Andrew Barnett                            297328                  Maroochydore Qld
  • Grant Barnett                                             325061                  Maroochydore Qld
  • Peter Elsworth                                           445649                  Maroochydore Qld
  • Adam Haggar                                              444802                  Maroochydore Qld
  • Live Trader Global Gold Rock P/L  335434                  Maroochydore Qld
  • Jordi Strybos                                               444561                  Maroochydore Qld

The Principal Directors of LTG GoldRock Financial Services Pty Ltd are:  David Elsworth (Tokyo, Japan), Peter Elsworth (Buderim Qld),  Andrew Barnett (Castaways Beach Qld); and the current secretary is Raoul Cruz (Marcoola Qld)

One of the criticisms levelled was Go Markets Pty Ltd had bought out LTG GoldRock Pty Ltd, therefore LTG GoldRock were only advising new traders to use the Go Markets trading platform for their own financial gain and percentage of the brokerage fees.  So I did a search on the ASIC website and ascertained the following information – please note you too can easily obtain this information – if you’re prepared to pay $18 to receive the current and historical information which provides more detail:.

  • Firstly I ascertained who had the shares for LTG GoldRock Pty Ltd which is:  Live Trader Global GoldRock Pty Ltd – the majority shareholder; and Richard Melvyn Hayter.
  • Secondly I ascertained who holds shares for Live Trader Global GoldRock Pty Ltd which is: Advantage Ski Lines P/L; Peter Douglas Elsworth; PYX Financial Group Ltd;
  • Thirdly I ascertained who holds shares for Go Markets Pty Ltd which is:  247 Capital Ltd – Hong Kong – Go Markets Pty Ltd is wholly owned by this company.

Therefore, I could not ascertain that Go Markets Pty Ltd has indeed taken over LTG GoldRock Pty Ltd as all 3 companies are registered and as such the information is publically available on who are the shareholders for each company and no director or company with a share interest in LTG GoldRock owns any shares in Go Markets Pty Ltd.

On reviewing the LTG Advisor profile this document clearly states:  ” LTG GoldRock may receive up to 30% of the gross brokerage you generate as a monthly commission”  – now from GO Markets. On confirming this with LTG this is a standard for the industry and comes out of the spread that Go Markets already charge, hence this is not an additional expense for an LTG trader.  This is also standard that brokerage firms offer companies like LTG incentives in order to obtain business from other company’s  customers.  Also LTG have made this is fully transparent prior to taking up an LTG membership.  LTG advised members in early 2013 they would be changing brokers from Halifax to Go Markets because the Go Markets system is far superior and offered LTG clients guaranteed stops in market hours which many other FX brokerage firms do not offer.  Hence if you’re still unsure – pick up the phone and talk to LTG and they will be only too happy to speak to you.

Another aspect I took into consideration was the new legislation governing the financial services industry which came into effect from 1st July 2013.  If you would like to know more about the new legislation on the ASIC website (you do have to register) you can watch and/or download the webcast of the changes being explained by ASIC personnel (you can also follow along via reading the slides presentation).  The URL link to register is:  http://webcast.viostream.com/?viocast=6621&auth=9cdfdc7b-9985-4899-877a-ca58d5a71822

The reason I give the above information is: if you feel as a LTG GoldRock member the advice or information you are being provided with doesn’t meet the legislated requirements then you do have an opportunity to register a complaint with ASIC for them to undertake an investigation as to whether LTG GoldRock is breaching the legislated requirements that they are licensed for.

I also checked out LTG’s claims re the awards they have won by undertaking a Google search.  Here is the link for the 2012 World Finance 100 Awards:  http://worldfinance100.com/#filter=.foreign-exchange and when you click on the profile you will see the video of AB and Peter Elsworth receiving the plaque at the Induction Ceremony.  LTG also won Best Global FX Training Provider 2011 with World Finance.  I would like to extend my congratulations are also extended to LTG GoldRock for winning the Australian Banking & Finance Industry award for the best FX Education Australia in 2013.

So why – getting back to the original contact the individual made in relation to LTG – why are they so angry and so negative with such a huge axe to grind?  As traders we are totally responsible for our trading outcomes.  Nobody is holding a gun to our heads and insisting we must take the trades that Chief discusses in his nightly reviews and training sessions.  If one doesn’t feel comfortable with the trading strategy being taught, then really all one has to do is research the trading strategy to ascertain whether Chief and/or AB are giving us newbie and experienced traders the correct information.

Also nobody is holding a gun to our heads that we must and only must trade according to the trading strategies that Chief trains us traders in.

If LTG were in any way  the scammers these people and their websites try to portray they are, I doubt very much LTG would be continually to be acknowledged by the FX industry experts – both within Australia and Internationally – and be receiving the awards and accolades they have and so richly deserve!  This alone reassured me LTG is indeed a great company to be with in order as a newbie apprentice trader to learn the necessary skills.

Mainly, I believe, as traders we are completely responsible for our own actions or inactions.  One only has to start reading a range of trading books from various authors to ascertain this.  Maybe it is easier to blame trading education companies like LTG, individual trainers and the like for our results; however this means we will never learn to become successful and independent traders in our own right taking complete responsibility for our trading actions. 

Hence if you have, like I have done, received communication that is highly negative about LTG, then I seriously recommend you undertake your own research to ascertain what level of trust you either wish to or continue to place in LTG and its training.  All the information I’ve provided above is clearly a matter of public record, which anyone can access.  For myself personally, until LTG prove otherwise, I’m happy to stay a member and learn how to become a successful, confident, consistent and disciplined trader.

To All Traders Continued Success

Desley Casey