Nontraditional Business Investment: An Examination of Investor Risk Perception and Regulation

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Florida Southern College
The expansion of nontraditional equity investing platforms and peer-to-peer lending platforms has created a financial disruption the private sector’s financial services industry. As the practice and number of platforms continue to expand, so do the associated concerns and reservations about supply-side investor risk, fraud, and money laundering. This paper is written for the purpose of conceptualizing and scrutinizing online equity crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending utilizing data about investor perception of risk. This analysis quantifies investor risk perception about the different conceptual spaces within the business life cycle in addition to the ease of entry and convenience associated with the practices. Also, it explores the current regulatory environment and use the critical application of accounting principles for an examination of fraud and culpability concerns within online equity crowdfunding and peer-to-peer (P2P) lending structures. This paper intends to promote academic and pragmatic discussion around the topic of online equity crowdfunding and peer-to-peer (P2P) business lending, especially as it pertains to investor risk, funded company accountability, and potential gaps in federal regulatory compliance and oversight.
Honors thesis Spring 2019
Crowd funding, Peer-to-peer loans, Equity, Fraud, Investments, Federal government, Financial risk