Article: Watchdog Alleges Insider Trading At SEC

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Watchdog Alleges Insider Trading At SEC

Liz Moyer

Forbes, 15 May 2009

The Securities and Exchange Commission is back under fire after the agency’s own watchdog alleged suspicious trading activity and possible insider trading by two staff attorneys.

SEC Inspector General David Kotz says he’s referred his findings to the Department of Justice, which he says is investigating along with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. As is its standard practice, the DOJ would neither confirm nor deny they are looking into the matter.

The report, dated March 3, details a two-year investigation of two SEC enforcement staff attorneys who may have traded on non-public information or engaging in insider trading in stocks of companies under investigation by the agency.

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Article: Cox’s SEC Censors Report on Bear Stearns Collapse

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Cox’s SEC Censors Report on Bear Stearns Collapse

Mark Pittman, Elliot Blair Smith, Jesse Westbrook

Bloomberg cited by RGM Communications via Wayback, 7 October 2008

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Christopher Cox’s regulators stood by as shrinking capital ratios and growing subprime holdings led to the collapse of Bear Stearns Cos., according to an unedited version of a study by the agency’s inspector general.

The report, by Inspector General H. David Kotz, was requested by Senator Charles Grassley to examine the role of regulators prior to the firm’s collapse in March. Before it was released to the public on Sept. 26, Kotz deleted 136 references, many detailing SEC memos, meetings or comments, at the request of the agency’s Division of Trading and Markets that oversees investment banks.

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Article: SEC Gave “Preferential Treatment” to Wall Street CEO

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SEC Gave “Preferential Treatment” to Wall Street CEO

Brian Ross, Rhonda Schwartz

abc News, 6 October 2008

The SEC gave “preferential treatment” to Wall Street executive John Mack during an insider trading investigation three years ago because Mack was about to become CEO of the Morgan Stanley investment banking firm, the SEC’s inspector general concluded in a report obtained by ABC News.

The report recommended disciplinary action against the SEC’s chief of enforcement, Linda Thomson, and said the firing of an SEC lawyer was “connected” to his persistent attempts to take Mack’s testimony. Read the report’s conclusion and recommendations here.

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Testimony: Bud Burrell Comments on Amendments to Regulation SHO

Testimony

Bud Burrell Comments on Amendments to Regulation SHO

SEC, 13 July 2008

“August 1973 I started on Wall Street in Block Trading for Bache. Worked in all Major firms through the years.Traveled all over the world.

From $6 Billion per day Fails to deliver is now Over $13 1/2 billion per day.

There is More Naked Short shares in the market than there is Outstanding Shares.

We have allowed our Clearing systems to be Gamed, to the point where they are able to manipulate markets.”

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Article: The ‘Phantom Shares’ Menace

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The ‘Phantom Shares’ Menace

John W. Welborn

Securities & Exchange,  24 April 2008

In 1985, the National Association of Securities Dealers (nasd) commissioned Irving M. Pollack, a securities law expert and former Securities and Exchange commissioner, to conduct a comprehensive review of short selling in nasdaq securities. The nasd sought to determine what, if any, additional short selling regulation was needed for the nasdaq market. The result was the now-famous “Pollack Study,” which described the short selling landscape of the day and made important recommendations regarding the disclosure, reporting, and settlement of short sales.

PDF (10 pages): The ‘Phantom Shares’ Menace

Article: SEC Will Be Investigated in Probe Sought by Senate’s Grassley

Article - Media

SEC Will Be Investigated in Probe Sought by Senate’s Grassley

Otis Bilodeau

Bloomberg via Wayback, 26 October 2006

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, already under scrutiny for its handling of a trading probe that entangled Morgan Stanley Chief Executive Officer John Mack, now faces a broad review by government auditors of its management and methods for policing the financial markets.

The Government Accountability Office agreed last week to investigate the SEC’s enforcement division and compliance department after requests by Senator Charles Grassley, an Iowa Republican who questioned whether the agency gave Mack special treatment. Grassley asked the GAO to examine the SEC’s “planning, oversight, control and other management processes” and gauge whether the agency does enough to oversee regulators at the New York Stock Exchange and NASD.

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Article: S.E.C. Inquiry on Hedge Fund Draws Scrutiny

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S.E.C. Inquiry on Hedge Fund Draws Scrutiny

Walt Bogdanich, Gretchen Morgenson

New York Times, 22 October 2006

By the evening of June 20, 2005, the government’s investigation of possible insider trading by Pequot Capital Management, a prominent hedge fund, had reached a critical stage.

Throughout the day, Robert Hanson, a branch chief in the Washington office of the Securities and Exchange Commission, had been questioning his lead investigator in the case about taking the testimony of John J. Mack, an influential Wall Street executive.

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Article: Hedge Hogs

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Hedge Hogs

Liz Moyer

Forbes, 28 June 2006

So who should be overseeing the $1.2 trillion hedge fund industry? Apparently no one is now. But the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee has two ideas.

Either the nation needs new legislation to tackle allegations of widespread trading abuses by the hedge funds, or law enforcement officials should simply be encouraged to do the right thing with laws they already have at their disposal?

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