In a pump and dump scheme, fraudsters typically spread false or misleading information to create a buying frenzy that will “pump” up the price of a stock and then “dump” shares of the stock by selling their own shares at the inflated price. Once the fraudsters dump their shares and stop hyping the stock, the stock price typically falls and investors lose money.  

False or misleading information about a company’s stock price may be spread through sources including social mediainvestment research websitesinvestment newsletters, online advertisements, email, Internet chat rooms, direct mail, newspapers, magazines, and radio. Microcap companies are particularly vulnerable to pump and dump schemes because there is often limited publicly-available information about microcap companies.

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