Thursday, January 14, 2010

My buddy Weizhen Tang

I met Weizhen Tang back in 1999 in the Toronto offices of a small investment dealer owned by Ken Norquay. This was long before Tang billed himself as "the Chinese Warren Buffett" and “The King of 1% Weekly Returns.” I was recently surprised to learn Wiezhen remembered me on page 51 of his book “The Chinese Warren Buffett.”

Now according to the business media the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) first raised allegations last March that Tang may have been operating a Ponzi scheme worth as much as $60 million (U.S.). Tang reportedly told investors that money from new investors was being used to pay out existing investors. Additional charges include securities fraud, unregistered trading in securities, illegal distributions of securities and making prohibited undertakings with the intention of effecting trades in securities, which were alleged to have taken place between Jan. 1, 2006, and March 31, 2009. The province's Securities Act states that no person or company can give written or oral representations on the future value or price of a security.

Well, here are the facts surrounding my knowledge of Tang. Firstly Tang’s book is filled with fantasy. This is assuming the misinformation and lies contained in the chapter “The Collapse of the Stock Market” are replicated throughout the book.

The reality is Tang never worked for the firm – he was never licensed or approved by any regulative authority. Tang had no industry accreditation having never written and passed any industry exams.

The reality is Tang was a terrible day trader than and apparently - still a terrible day trader today. Unfortunately Tang is a legend in his own mind. He believes his own lies. Tang is probably a sociopath, also known as an Antisocial Personality Disorder, a member of a diagnostic group known as ‘Personality Disorders‘. Without question, an Antisocial Personality is well aware they are telling a lie and in fact, lie very purposefully in an attempt to manipulate others, deny personal responsibility, escape the consequences of their behavior, or place them at some advantage. In his book he rambles on about being persecuted by clients who lost money and by “restrictions and pressure” from “government authorities.” Telling a lie is always an option for an Antisocial Personality, especially when their behavior has caused them some social or personal difficulties. Their lies range from daily excuses and promises, to complex schemes and scams that are based on a series of lies and deceptions.

I don’t think Tang ran a Ponzi scheme - he simply lost all the money in trading.

Unfortunately there no rules in place that can stop Tang from doing it all again, he will just operate under another name (he used is wife’s license back in the late 1990’s). Your only defense as a private investor is to understand – if it’s too good to be true, it isn’t true. And that’s the truth

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