Article: In Insider Trading Settlement, Steven Cohen Will Be Free to Manage Outside Money in 2 Years

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In Insider Trading Settlement, Steven Cohen Will Be Free to Manage Outside Money in 2 Years

Matthew Goldstein and Alexandra Stevenson, 08 January 2016

Steven A. Cohen, the billionaire investor, is walking away largely unscathed from nearly a decade of investigations by federal prosecutors and securities regulators into accusations of insider trading at his former hedge fund.

On Friday, Mr. Cohen reached a deal with the Securities and Exchange Commission that will bar him from managing money for outside investors for the next two years. That is a far cry from the lifetime ban that securities regulators sought when they filed an administrative case against him more than two years ago.

Lifetime bans from the industry are rare. Nonetheless, the case against Mr. Cohen — accusing him of failing to adequately oversee an employee — was among the most prominent administrative actions brought by securities regulators in recent years. And he is not paying a fine in the settlement.

“It’s a huge victory for him not to get fined personally,” said Ross B. Intelisano, a securities lawyer at the law firm Rich, Intelisano & Katz. “In a ‘failure to supervise’ case, the S.E.C. is usually pretty aggressive in getting fines, so it seems like a hollow victory” for the S.E.C., he said.

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