Brokerage firm PT Phillip Sekuritas Indonesia has denied accusations that it gave now-suspended financial advisory firm PT Jouska Finansial Indonesia access to its customers' accounts.
Phillip Sekuritas president director Daniel Tedja said on Friday that the company was merely acting as a sponsor for Jouska’s financial education programs, in which it facilitated clients to open a securities account at Phillip Sekuritas.
“All customers will be given direct access to their own accounts to make transactions,” Daniel said in a statement obtained by The Jakarta Post.
He went on to say that customers’ securities and investment fund accounts were only accessible by the brokerage firm to help with settlements and fund withdrawals.
The statement comes weeks after Jouska’s former clients came out on social media in late July, saying their financial advisors were managing their portfolio and investment fund accounts without consent.
A former client uploaded an offering letter and contract he received from the company when using Jouska’s services in 2018 and 2019, stating that Jouska would have the right to manage the clients’ funds, as well as buy and sell stocks in their portfolio.
The clients also said Jouska had been prohibiting its clients from making any transactions for their accounts on their own.
Jouska neither denied nor confirmed the allegations.
The Financial Services Authority (OJK) then instructed Jouska to cease operations over allegations of illegal stock brokerage and investment mismanagement after summoning and questioning Jouska CEO and founder Aakar Abyasa Fidzuno.
The Financial Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (PPATK) also said in early August that it was investigating Jouska for alleged money laundering following the suspected illegal investment and fund management.
Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) trading director Laksono Widodo said on Tuesday that the bourse had summoned Phillip Sekuritas for questioning regarding the customers’ claims. He, however, refused to reveal the results, as the investigation was still ongoing.
Phillip Sekuritas, which is a part of Singapore-based PhillipCapital Group, also stated that it carried out its duties as underwriter for the initial public offering (IPO) of computer hardware-trading company PT Sentral Mitra Informatika, listed under the code LUCK, according to the capital market’s prevailing mechanism and regulations.
“We ensure that the company and its management do not hold any of LUCK’s shares in the primary or secondary market,” Daniel said.
Jouska’s clients said they endured hundreds of millions of rupiah in losses after the advisor used most of their funds to buy Sentral Mitra’s shares.
Sentral Mitra, which was listed on the bourse on Nov. 29, 2018, saw its share price increase exponentially from Rp 285 (2 US cents) to its highest level of Rp 2,020 apiece around eight months after its IPO. The company’s share price has since dropped to below its IPO price, trading at Rp 194 as of Friday at 11:07 a.m.