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How can you tell if you are reading Fake financial news?

Posted on June 23, 2017

77% of Americans say it’s important to take advantage of financial opportunities when breaking financial news becomes available. Compare that statistic to the 63% of Americans who understand that fake financial and economic news is making it harder to make smart financial decisions.

Unfortunately, fabricated financial news stories are becoming more prevalent. What’s a smart consumer to do?

The best thing to do is pay attention to where you see the news and how it is portrayed. Huge headlines in all caps that promise a Hot Tech Stock Tip that will Make You Rich should probably be ignored or looked at very closely. Here are some other ways to protect yourself from fake financial news:

  • Due diligence – Never make a knee-jerk decision based on financial news you’ve just heard or read about. Research the information, source or company carefully.
  • Be cynical of outrageous claims – Inadequate evidence or extensive use of unnamed experts suggests a false story.
  • Scrutinize sponsored content and learn to spot advertorials – These are different than articles, as they have been professionally written to sell, rather than provide information.
  • Recognize website spoofing and satire – These are very different from real stories. Check to see if the source you have just read is known for parody, such as a story in The Onion.
  • Never trust shared stories on social media. Look for the original source of the stories. They should be taken from trusted news and/or financial sites.

At Teipen Selanders Poynter & Ayres, we go by that old rule of thumb: If any financial news story or opportunity seems too good to be true, it more than likely is. Protect yourself by doing your homework before jumping into any deal that requires investing your hard earned money.