Article: SEC settles with hedge fund billionaire Steven Cohen

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SEC settles with hedge fund billionaire Steven Cohen

Renae Merle, 09 January 2016

Billionaire Steven A. Cohen has been in the crosshairs of federal prosecutors for nearly a decade. His hedge fund, SAC Capital, was once one of the most powerful on Wall Street, managing more than $15 billion for investors and producing stellar returns for years.

But prosecutors suspected that SAC’s success was too good to be true.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara in Manhattan once called Cohen’s hedge fund as a “veritable magnet for market cheaters.” When, in 2013, SAC agreed to pay $1.2 billion to settle charges that it tolerated rampant insider trading it was one of the highest-profile successes in the government’s aggressive push against insider trading.

Still, connecting Cohen, one of the richest people on the world, directly to those misdeeds has remained elusive. And on Friday, the Securities and Exchange Commission essentially conceded. The Wall Street watchdog settled its nearly three-year old civil case against Cohen, who was accused of failing to properly supervise employees, with no financial penalty.

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