BERLIN (Reuters) -Germany’s financial watchdog BaFin said on Thursday that it planned to clamp down on the marketing, distribution and sale of futures products with additional payment obligations.
It isn’t the first time that BaFin has moved to ban a product for retail investors but comes as the watchdog increasingly focuses on consumer protection following a revamp and new leadership.
BaFin said that such futures, trade in which amounts to some 80 billion euros per year, expose investors to “substantial risk”.
“In highly volatile market situations, these products can result in unlimited losses,” it said.
Futures contracts are agreements to buy or sell an asset or commodity on a particular date and allow investors to take a view on future pricing.
Online brokers in Germany have recently increased their offerings for futures products.
BaFin published a draft of the order on Thursday and is giving market participants until March 17 to comment.
BaFin already banned the sale of financial contracts for differences (CFDs) in 2017, making use of sweeping new consumer protection powers.
(Reporting by Maria Sheahan; additional reporting by Tom SimsEditing by Miranda Murray, Kirsten Donovan)