Football Index: Gambling Commission "neither confirm nor deny" investigations
"We neither confirm nor deny the existence of investigations"
The Gambling Commission have said they will not be commenting on Football Index, despite the angry reaction from its customers at the the betting firm's recent change in terms.
The company, which is licensed by the Gambling Commission, imitates a stock exchange and allows customers to buy shares in footballers.
Traders can then earn dividends from the shares they own which relate to player performance and other criteria.
The Football Index market has experienced a series of crashes in recent months, with the cost of player share prices tumbling on each occasion as a result.
The most drastic crash to date came on Saturday, triggered by the company's announcement on Friday that it would be significantly reducing payments for dividends within a month.
Buy prices dipped significantly, with shares in Jadon Sancho, one of the more popular players for traders, plummeting to just 88p from a high of £7.34 the previous day. Similar drops were mirrored across the market.
While traders are still able to sell their shares, the price drops mean very few appear likely to recoup anywhere near the amount they originally paid for them.
With anger growing, Football Index released a statement on Saturday evening acknowledging the reaction to their announcement about dividends.
The statement also conceded that the company had sustained "substantial losses" over recent months, and that they had hoped to rejuvenate the market with other initiatives whilst retaining the current dividend payment levels.
Customers on social media have accused Football Index of misleading them by saying they were in a strong financial position, contradicting Saturday's statement.
— Taylor (@FITaylor3) March 7, 2021
With many traders calling on the Gambling Commission to look into the matter, a spokesperson responded to JOE's request for comment, saying:
"Our regulation of Football Index is restricted to its provision of remote general betting to consumers. This licence entitles operators to provide facilities for betting on the outcome of real events remotely.
"In order to regulate effectively we do not talk about individual cases. We may, following the conclusion of an investigation, publish details and the outcome of that investigation.
"We neither confirm nor deny the existence of investigations."
Football Index also disabled replies to their statement on Twitter over the weekend, explaining the action had been taken in response to "personal threats received by FI staff".