On February 12, 2020, the United States Federal Trade Commission filed a massive 8000+ page lawsuit against the Online Trading Academy. The complaint alleged that thousands of consumers spent a minimum of $370 million dollars and were systematically ripped off with phony performance claims.
On February 25, 2020, the FTC successfully obtained a temporary restraining order against all corporate assets, as well as the personal assets of company founders: Eyal Shachar and Sam Seiden.
On April 7, 2020, TradingSchools.Org published an article titled: Online Trading Academy. Yes, its a FRAUD.
In that article, we interviewed former customers and alleged former employees of the company. Combined with the allegations from the FTC, our article detailed how the fraud was executed.
Since the publishing of our previous article, things have only gotten worse for the Online Trading Academy.
Today’s update will bring former students and prospective customers of Online Trading Academy up to date with the most recent and relevant information.
The founder of Online Trading Academy has already admitted to the fraud.
First things first, the founder of Online Trading Academy, Mr. Sam Seiden has already publicly and privately stated that “Online Trading Academy is a fraudulent business.”
This is undisputed.
However, the co-founder of the business, Eyal Shachar is “very proud of his business” and vows to fight to keep the allegedly fraudulent business operational.
Apparently, Mr. Shachar believes that consumers are extraordinarily stupid and would prefer to believe him over the very person that created the curriculum for Online Trading Academy: Mr. Sam Seiden.
Additionally, it is also undisputed that Mr. Seiden has already had his investment accounts audited by the Federal Trade Commission and Mr. Sam Seiden is a net losing trader.
Even the Investment Counselors that taught the courses at Online Trading Academy were also proven to be net losing traders.
And finally, the students themselves, that had opened hundreds of investment accounts at Trade Station Securities — were also overwhelmingly net losing traders.
Based upon all of the allegations and the extensive FTC investigation, its fair to say that Online Trading Academy is a fraudulent business.
But still, Mr. Eyal Shechar persists and claims that “Online Trading Academy is currently negotiating a settlement with the FTC, and WE ARE BACK IN BUSINESS.”
The question is how does Mr. Shachar, and the owners of the Online Trading Academy franchises expect to “cure” a business where the core proposition of “getting rich trading” has already been shown to be a fraud?
Its appears that Mr. Shachar has taken the same path of Trump University.
The Trump University playbook
From 2005 – 2010, President Trump operated a fraudulent business named Trump University. Supposedly, Mr. Trump wanted to “teach you how to get rich with real estate.”
Thousands of consumers spent hundreds of millions of dollars to learn “Trumps Secrets.” Except there were no secrets, no private funding, the supposed millionaire students were paid actors, and the instructors had no experience in real estate.
The whole thing was a massive fraud. Many large states, including Texas, New York, and California eventually sued Mr. Trump for fraud. Eventually, the operation was shut down and Mr. Trump agreed to a small fine.
However, President Trump was sued in a nationwide class-action lawsuit and eventually settled for $25 million. However, Mr. Trump never paid the $25 million, instead, the $25 million was paid by a political contributor named Phil Ruffin in 2019.
But what is not well known about Trump University is the strategies and tactics that Trump used to discredit the regulators and terrorize his former students into not speaking publicly about the fraud.
It appears that Online Trading Academy is attempting the same tactics employed by Trump University.
Lawsuits against the students
Trump University was notorious for filing defamation lawsuits against the very students in which they scammed. Online Trading Academy is no different. In fact, court records show defamation lawsuits and numerous legal threats against former students.
Trump University included language in their sales contract that forbade former students from writing online reviews that Mr. Trump found distasteful or disparaging. Online Trading Academy also included “gag” clauses in their contracts that forbade students from writing disparaging online reviews about Online Trading Academy.
Trump University attempted to include provisions in their contract that would not allow a student to sue in state or federal court, nor file a class action lawsuit where the students could band together and fight together. Online Trading Academy also included a provision where students could not sue in state and federal court, or file a class action, but instead were forced into private arbitration hearings.
Arbitration hearings are notoriously sneaky because there is no public record of the allegations. In effect, it keeps the fraud “under wraps” and hidden from public view or commentary.
Trump University sent out “student satisfaction questionnaires” where students were encouraged to express their pleasure and enjoyment at using Trump University products and services. These “student satisfaction questionnaires” were later used by Trump to deny refunds to students that had expressed satisfaction with Trump University.
Online Trading Academy has also employed this same strategy. In fact, they attempted to sue the Federal Trade Commission by submitting the results of their internal surveys to “show its not a fraud” from 9,000 former students.
These survey results from Online Trading Academy will, in all likelihood, be used against those former students to deny future refund requests.
Additionally, Trump University employed former industry regulators and attorneys to publicly discredit the allegations of fraud. Online Trading Academy has also employed this same strategy.
For instance, on May 21, 2020, the Online Trading Academy employed (in)famous lawyer Alan Dershowitz by declaring that the Federal Trade Commission is the one committing fraud and he further describes Online Trading Academy as “totally legitimate.” Have a look for yourself…
We all know Alan Dershowitz — the same guy that defended Jeffrey Epstein and allegedly slept with Epstein’s underage victims. Yes, that Jeffrey Epstein.
The same Alan Dershowitz that was recently chased off a nude beach for flirting with teenage girls — according to locals.
The same Alan Dershowitz that claims he is a 1st amendment lawyer that has filed no less than three defamation lawsuits in the past several months. One lawsuit complains mightily that a fictional character (not even a real person) called him a “shyster.”
Another lawsuit against a teenage girl he got a massage from, and later poked. Dershowitz claims it was an “old Russian lady” but the girl claims “I was only 15 years old.” Yet another lawsuit against Netflix over his depiction in the “Filthy Rich” documentary, and another lawsuit against a lawyer he claims “said mean words.”
Frankly, its really sad, funny, and not very surprising that he is now claiming that Online Trading Academy is a “legitimate business.”
Alan Derchowitz, the great defender of Trump and his phony University is now defending Online Trading Academy and their phony Academy.
But many consumers are not taking this lying down.
Class action lawsuits against Online Trading Academy
On April 20, 2020, the first of several class action lawsuits was filed against Online Trading Academy in Federal Court. Read below:Online-Trading-Academy-Any-Jine-Lawsuit
On June 11, 2020 the second class-action lawsuit was filed against the Online Trading Academy in Central District of California. The allegations of fraud are stunning. Read complaint below:OTA-Fernando-Avila
On June 29, 2020, the third class-action lawsuit was filed against the Online Trading Academy in California Federal Court. Once again, the allegations are painful to read.Online-Trading-Academy-California-Lawsuit
Are there additional lawsuits coming for the owners of Online Trading Academy? I don’t know. But one thing I do know — every single week someone is contacting TradingSchools.Org wondering what they should do, or whom they should contact for relief.
My recommendation would be contact either of the attorney’s listed in the above complaints.
Additionally, I would also recommend that victims of Online Trading Academy also file complaints with their State Attorney General in hopes of obtaining relief.
Some students have had good luck. For instance, various Online Trading Academy students in the state of Massachusetts were able to secure $160k in refunds by pressuring Attorney General Maura Healey to investigate.
Other students have also had good luck convincing the authorities to investigate this “phony school.” A perfect example is where a group of California residents convinced the California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education to fine Online Trading Academy for $75k.
In spite of all of this, as recently as May 24, 2020, the Online Trading Academy vows that “we are back” and “ready to teach you how to get rich.”
Former Online Trading Academy instructors sued for FRAUD
As crazy as all this reads, it gets even worse.
For example, the owner of an Online Trading Academy franchise in Texas was recently sued by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission for selling phony promissory notes to students that supposedly guaranteed 18% annual interest.
Except he forget to actually pay the interest. Nor the principle.
Additionally, yet another Online Trading Academy “Investment Educator” named Buddy Ringgold, located in San Diego, Ca, was sued for a former student for fleecing him of his life savings of $820,000.
Shall I continue? I can. But you get the point.
Wrapping things up
I sincerely hope this is my final article regarding Online Trading Academy.
But I suspect, this will not be the last time. The current ownership has vowed to keep the business open. They are steadfast in their resolve that “Online Trading Academy is totally legit.”
Additionally, I suspect, that based upon their previous threats they will sue me over my articles. But I will keep on writing, and exposing these frauds, regardless of the consequences.
Thanks for reading.
They list all their course prices now. Maybe a stipulation from the SEC to do so. But it’s still the same crap. A “free” intro at one of their many location offices, then probably the usual bait or upsell by their ”instructors”. Noted on their website, they are pushing a new batch of “instructors” no doubt seguing into an image of today’s woked media, rather than the joke examples described in the first tradingschools review of OTA. So here’s the list of their clown ‘courses’. Still at crazy prices meant to enrich the OTA owners circle since they can’t even trade for themselves, or likely don’t even trade, pathetic. Really, if one’s a newb you’d be far better off reading a few books, or actually taking a college course or reading a free book on finance 101 and investment. (A free ebook here: (https://www.palmislandtraders.com/books/finance/introfinbook.html))
OTA list of shame:
free intro class (upsell & bait) at any of their
core strategy – $7,700
core strategy – $13,750
intro to crypt – free (bait)
digital assets – $299
crypto investor live – $2,999
strategic investor course – $2,000 “part 1″(lol)
part 2 – $3,500
straegic investing xlt – $13,750
pro stock trader – $5,500
xlt-stock trading -$13,750
pro options trader – $5,500
xlt-options – $13,750
pro futures trader – $5,500
xlt-futures – $13,750
pro forex trader – $5,500
xlt course – $13,750
Oh wow, Emmett, check out this quote -> (https://www.tradingacademy.com/ota-advantage.aspx) ->
“The education provided by OTA provides significant learning value to students and enables students who follow the principles and use the techniques taught by OTA to develop confidence in trading and investing” Dr. Jeff Harris –
Former Chief Economist of the SEC and CFTC
Professor and Chair, Department of Finance and
Real Estate, American University(!,or is it really the fake diploma company? (https://www.buydegreeonline.net/the-american-university-fake-diplomas.html)
– OTA engaged Dr. Harris to do a comprehensive review of its education in 2019. – so a really desperate tool (with a fake “American University” diploma?) to accept a bribe, or bought into their shamshow circle, what a lousy sellout to fraud of a post-retirement “career”.
how come they are back in business?
sigh. I’d noticed OTA went mostly only at worldwide locations within the last year after their reported slaps on the wrist per this article. But these last six months, it looks like they have reopened TWENTY-THREE locations in the U.S. AGAIN.
Emmet, I think there needs to be a followup of OTA. As you’d mentioned Ripoff-Report has been compromised (or bought out by the shamshows). The FTC, CFTC have failed to shut this outrageous scam down. Literally the original grandfather of big ad branched online and on-site traducation scams staffed with dubious car salesman and ne’er-dowells, precursor of RaginBull and WarriorTrading. A new review that examines and explains how OTA finagled their way out of being shut down, and of course new warnings, so newbs and desperate trading aspirants learn the truth early about all these shamshows , and this traducation “industry”, “ROTTEN to the CORE”. Faked stats/statements, faked member testimonials (outsourced to copyrwriters in asia as mentioned), actored shills in rooms and discussion forums.
Maybe there should also be a summary, or bullet points of how traducations do their fraud. So many good posts in the comments by Emmet and some others about all their tricks to fool , dupe and ultimately dtchurn – (daytrading & monthly churn) for monthly scammed subs and however “packages”. But so many good posts are buried in these comments, and hard to single and note them all out. So maybe there should be a faq, or “wake-up call” article “sticky” that covers all these tricks, as well as recent developments of the past decade since tradingschools’ start that was helped exposed. Such as the corruption of ripoff-report, exposure of scam sponsors on places and discussions such as ET, exposure of other “review” sites such as “trustpilot” and former “investimonials” a creation by Sykes, and quid business creation (pay to supress true exposing testimonials, or insert innumerable fake actored testimonials).
Trading is so hard. And newbs like Ari-D and others still uninformed of the depths of this cesspool ‘industry’, need to recognize it’s a real competition. Hardly a productive or qualified industry so in my opinion, no sense in comparing to ‘experience’ of professionals such as doctors or engineers; it’s really more like learning to be a good gambler or even an individual , independent sports player with all its nuances, and reaching that rare “pro” level in order to even reach “making a living” for just a season to start off if ever. All newbs need to recognize trading is not much more than legit gambling. And chances of finding and maintaining a working method for even one year is like winning a state or national lottery. Because the HFT cheaters, even the brokers will watch the volume and often ruin any new edges that suddenly get piled on by tens of thousands of retailers where so many past methods and “trading secrets” had been ruined in past years, decades ago. Like trading with stochastics used to profit by itself, but only back in the 80’s when very few had those dinosaur computer systems that could show it to trade it. So a lot of these shams sell “secrets” or methods that either never worked, or used to work a long time ago but of course don’t anymore, but it’s part of their big lying fraud and ad package, just like OTA and all their lousy losing “products”. Also regurgitators like jacked-ass Deaton or clothes-pin nosevoice “Dr.” Barry Burns with a new post-office address in Sherman Oaks.
Raging Bull building back better as well. Thanks for everyone that tried to ‘take them down’ – they are actually better than ever before!
Nice try shill, no they aren’t and will have to settle for smaller revenues and competing against other shamshows without the phony in-your face grinning ads. And they have to do their sordid selling dreams business under guidelines now, and if they step out of line, refusing refunds, etc., they can get into deep shit again. None of them can even trade for a living like this usual charlatan cesspool snakeoil “industry”. And even the new dupes can figure that out soon enough and get their refunds. This series of exposing reviews and comments will always be available for any of RB’s duped to help wise up also.
Are you a member of Raging Bull? If you aren’t (I am) then how do you know if they are ‘better’ now or not? I think they are – they are trying harder to keep people happy which I think we can both agree is a good thing! #schooled #pwned
Thank you for doing what you do. Having spent 37 Grand, and giving our entire Savings to this organization, it is sort of therapeutically vindicating to read your research.
We read the positives, below, but generally speaking, when someone spent a few thousand dollar and had money to burn, I would not expect them to get upset. And they dont! However, when you spend your savings because your husband has a chronic illness (and you tell the salesman of this desire to pay medical bills) and yet you struggle after five years of trading-including blowing up of a Futures account- you really cannot look the other way.
Here are our complaints; We noticed after several years the same people in the XLT’s day in and day out. This was concerning because education is something you eventually learn. Can you imagine if we put doctors or police on this sort of schedule? Meaning they never really “get it” and just keep coming back for more of the same information? I dont know if I articulated this correctly, but it just seems strange that nobody seems to be moving on.
Second issue is the cult mindset. My husband has been cussed at while in some of these room. Simply for warning others not to invest in the ProPicks. As many know, this organization continues to look for ways they can bleed you out of more dollars. Recently it has been the Signature Series. Instructors you once thought would share some of their strategies are now withholding” from students unless you for over another lump sum. Nevertheless, why be called an “ass” or a “whiner” for the crime of looking out for others, which leads to my third complaint. We were upset and tried to contact Larry Jacobson at the Corporate office, but he refused to speak to us.
The ProPicks? They have recently been changed to OTA Picks since the lawsuit from the FCC. We have always questioned whether or not they were done by “Pros” Nevertheless, we paid for as many as we could. Why? Because we thought it would be a good idea at the time in case we didn’t “get” the process. In case we didn’t understand the trading they were teaching. This is why we told the salesman we would like to buy the lifetime picks. To fall back on. What I cannot get across to people is this; these “picks” are the product and the fruit of what OTA does. It is there Supply and Demand trading provided in the form of trades. But, what happens when they do not work out? Before we paid for the ProPicks, we were given a sheet with stats. These stats showed the trade wins and the trade losses. The numbers were over 50% for winners. And of course, if you understand the OTA method, it matters not if you lose because the winners will outweigh the losers if you follow risk management. And that certainly makes sense IF that is the case. But, it is not.
What people need to think long and hard about is this; if these picks are successful then the OTA “patented” supply and demand is also successful. But if they fail, this is also a reflection on the “patented” system. Each and every week my husband is stopped out of the majority of the Forex trades taken from the lifetime “picks we paid for. So when we mentioned earlier that the people leaving positive reviews don’t have much skin in the game, we do. Every time he is stopped out, we see how our Savings was thrown out. We didn’t just pay for annual ProPicks. We paid for lifetime ProPicks. We are dealing with the losses every day of a product “till death do us part”. It’s never over when you paid for a lifetime of something that has a losing ratio.
I recently saw my husband in his office with tears in his eyes. Stopped out again after being in the trade over a week and a half. And nothing to show for it. No “fifty dollars a day” as they told us in the orientation. I could not help but send OTA an email complaining. I was disheartened. What did OTA do? They wanted to have their Forex coach talk to him on the phone about “how” the picks work. WHAT? He has been using them for almost five years. Why does he need help when they are self explanatory and contain the entry, stop and target? They wanted to blame him. It was another way to deal with the complaint and say “we tried to help”. HELP WITH WHAT? He looks to the OTA PICKS because he fails at finding demand zones based upon their “patented” system.
I have said enough, The Gov’t really didn’t help us with this whole ordeal. And another reason I am glad to read this review on the website? RIPOFF REPORT removed our review. We tried to tell the world what happened in 2020. They said we needed to give OTA a chance at fixing the problem. When we asked them why the review was not posted or did we do anything wrong? They wrote “You did not do anything wrong when you filed your report. Online Trading Academy is on our Corporate Advocacy Program. You should’ve received a letter from our EDitor explaining the program and what the company is expected to do. We will forward this information to our Editor, please be patient.”
Apparently, the non biased website is now biased? Nothing is posted after 2019/2020 as far as I can tell. .
Apologies, I meant FTC. Could not edit.
Eyal’s scheme’s extend beyond the workplace. I am grateful to see someone else has connected the dots between Trump and OTA; I thought I’d been the only one, with a memory of a planned trip Trump had to visit the Shachar’s neighborhood during his first campaign. Employees are also silenced from reporting true experiences. The Shachar’s handpicked employees are sicked on each other to compete and I lost because I wouldn’t play dirty or dishonest. I got too far into compliance with refunds so that played against my favor. I’ve been battling their defamation of me all year, and am feeling empowered by your article. Thank you.
Unfortunately, many people do not study the features of trading. For many, only the virtual figure is important – profit! But they don’t want to study the risks, especially the trades. I know people who took out loans, mortgaged houses and cars to make a profit that they were told aboutUnfortunately, many people do not study the features of trading. For many, only the virtual figure is important – profit! But they don’t want to study the risks, especially the trades. I know people who took out loans, mortgaged houses and cars to make a profit that they were told about
Apparently they will also ruin your credit for failure to pay them. This was another ftc lawsuit against them. One of these days they are going to scam the wrong person. https://www.ftc.gov/enforcement/cases-proceedings/refunds/faq-online-trading-academy
” former student for fleecing him of his life savings of $820,000.”
Quote from Post: “First things first, the founder of Online Trading Academy, Mr. Sam Seiden has already publicly and privately stated that “Online Trading Academy is a fraudulent business.”
This is undisputed.”
If you’re going to make this claim regarding what Sam Seiden said, please include the source, i.e. where/when he said these words, etc. as a footnote so we can review in context. Thank you.
Mr. Sam Seiden had a deposition with the Federal Trade Commission. Additionally, Mr. Sam Seiden was forced to turn over emails and correspondences to the investigative team at the Federal Trade Commission. In those correspondences and deposition, it was revealed that — in fact — that Mr. Sam Seiden said the following:
“Online Trading Academy is a fraudulent business”
“I have overwhelming proof of that fraud”
“I have seen 2 other companies shut down by regulators…for far less”
“I got more emails today (every day) from students that are losing money because of OTA”
Read the FTC complaint, read the injunction, read the various class action lawsuits, of which I have included all.
Additionally, let me remind you that Online Trading Academy students, the trading counselors, and most importantly Mr. Sam Seiden had their accounts audited by the FTC and the results were disastrous. Especially those of the “Impeccable Master” Mr. Sam Seiden where it was shown that he is, IN FACT, a losing trader.
Additionally, the FTC settlement is equally damning where Online Trading Academy cannot deny the allegations of the FTC complaint.
Yes, Online Trading Academy is a scam. To think otherwise is a willful suspension of facts.
Absolutely. These shamshows “gurus” , especially the outrageous big expensive ones are more probably, imo, likely to be shown as live losing traders when their actual live accounts , if any/(or token dummy live account, an easily funded expense by the ill-gotten duped profit sales, to showcase “select” trades as part of the shamshow to their newb or sunkcost clients), are subpoened from the brokers by the FTC and other federal authorities.
Seiden reeks to me, trying to pull off a Belfort or even like Emmett to give up everything to the feds in plea deals (‘yes, it was all a scam, but I had little to do with it at the end!’ Seiden probably pleaded) , in order to “turn a new leaf”, but of course in his case now to start a new shamshow of “seiden strategies 2.0” while having ditched OTA and his former partners and franchisees leaving them in the mess. If this backstabbing rat nature doesn’t warn newbs enough, more hapless or uninformed monthly newbs could be sunkcost in Seiden’s new scam in similar ways , montly churned or worse, like OTA.
Here’s what I don’t like; if you’re a trader for a firm; you’re not a client ..
This is total bullshit; Trump U – It’s a RE U, not regionally accredited ..i dunno why he paid out; he shouldn’t have that, actually, is the only thing i heard and coming out at the time of the campaign ..
Well, guy just was nominated for the Nobel, Serbia-Kosovo, Israel-Bahrain and Israel-UAE ..so much for making 🙂 deals ..
WaPo..ya, you link to that, lol ..
You want Trump’s secrets read Art of the Deal ..
Well, yeah, if you’re happy why ask for a refund ..
‘(former) industry regulators and attorneys to publicly discredit the allegations’ well, have you ever asked why they are coming on board ..
Truth is better than facts, here’s what i know; Trump was hand-selected by God (if want proof , ask) listen to your heart for it cannot beat wrong ..
we’re in the Joseph period lot of distractions ..
ya, and Dershowitz is not only top-notch ..Think worth more than all of TradingSchool’s army ..
I haven’t heard anything abt him defending Epstein. Pizzagate is real tho. Lolita Express too.
See, at some point I could’ve gone online discovered pagesix is a tabloid and abovethelaw at first glance seems respectful; till you see the podcasts obviously biased..gossip is cool, I have reason to suspect polt motivation here but all I’ve mentioned before this? Stands, is enough ..
..whether those mean words are anti-semitic, but Netflix absolutely has reason to get its ass sued. Already look at the new exec n’ board or, Michelle Obama prior to the exec) then, Cuties? If you condone that ..Wtf? ..
I dunno ’bout OTA but gotta remember money gets the best legal help .. he’s on Trump’s side, he’s good ..children of Abraham Israel did sin; not now ..
OTA may not be a good co., but if the FTC fails its own criteria..yes ..
(Right, and getting thus far in the video, he has no idea what they do, he’s defending the concept which is valid w/out the actual substance, which would be nice if he did..)
Nice 1) ATL’s article contradicts pagesix’s, lol .. But, the defamation lawsuit wasn’t against a fictional character it was for slander ..
..ya, 😉 except opinions can be fact ..
No, defamation applies any time..
Wtf is that 2nd last paragraph (ATL) LOL da best; this is like https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10157954560353165&set=p.10157954560353165&type=3 haha
California has also now includeth Project 1619 in its curriculum..Wtf ..
I read your post regarding Netflix “Cuties.” I agree, the movie was very controversial. But relevant and ripe for discussion.
Its important to note that the movie was produced in France and English was voiced over. There is some cultural friction.
The Gist: The prophet Mohammed took a second wife. The second wife was nine years of age. That is gross. Modern culture perceives this as disgusting, which it is. Yet, it is still used as an excuse by many Muslim men to seek 2nd marriages with younger women. Now combine this with modern social media, and the pressures that young girls face, in a hyper-sexualized world.
The Cuties movie was upsetting. But the movie was not a modern “porno,” rather it was a “fuck you” movie to Muslims, backward culture, and perverts that enjoy watching young girls. That’s what the movie was really about.
At the end of the movie, we could see the girl become empowered and independent in thought. Not accepting of either the modern culture of sexualization, or the culture of religious extremism.
I stand by what I said. They could’ve produced any instead they produced this garbage
.. Anyone who defends Cuties lock up your children from them ..
Emmett, I saw your reply, edited, just wanna reply
The ppl are so filled b/cause we’re angry ‘cos the media is lieing to us; hang on, one side is ‘cos we know they are, the other is ‘cos (believing/)of the bullshit they fe(e)d us ..
..There’s only two possibilites; truth and not
tribalism is good, except in this case it’s not going for your own little interests , it’s defending truth
if we want humanity let’s begin by what side is breaking shit, looting, etc.
Can you sack your current website hosting guy and bring back section with most recent comments that used to be visible on the home page. It would encourage people to comment like it used to.