• Btw the longer Fortune piece quotes Guggenheim's Todd Boehly saying "Mike is no more of an idol than Steve Jobs, Ben Franklin, or Mark Twain."


    Michael Milken Seems To Have Been Overdue For Another SEC Investigation

    I like taking cheap shots at the SEC as much as the next guy, maybe more, so when I see a headline like “The SEC is investigating Michael Milken” it’s tempting to say “oh, yeah, he supposedly did some insider trading in the mid ’80s, so it makes sense that the SEC would be getting […]

    / Feb 27, 2013 at 6:13 PM
  • This didn't help him with the whole keeping his job thing


    The SEC, Like Everyone Else, Didn’t Believe Citi’s Financial Statements

    Every once in a while I almost write “I don’t envy big bank CEOs,” and then I consider my own finances and the mood passes. But it does seem hard, no? The job is basically that you run around all day looking at horrible messes – even in good times, there are some horrible messes […]

    / Feb 25, 2013 at 3:33 PM
  • I mean I'm sure they're not actually Swiss. This is a stretch. But it's prettier than like a silhouette with a question mark on it or other things that signify "anonymous trader."


    SEC Ruins One Anonymous Swiss Person’s Lucky Day

    The SEC’s Heinz insider trading complaint is a delightful epistemological puzzle. The story goes that, on February 13, some person or persons with a Swiss bank account bought 2,553 Heinz June $65 calls (255,300 shares), with the stock at just over $60, for $0.30 – $0.40 per share (around $90,000 total). The next day, Heinz […]

    / Feb 19, 2013 at 3:16 PM
  • Is this about RBS? I dunno. I'm getting more into creepy lobby pictures, etc.


    RBS Isn’t Sure Its Foreign Subsidiaries Could Survive In Prison

    The Wall Street Journal story today about the next Libor domino to fall – RBS, which will be coughing up $700mm or so to regulators in the next few weeks – is full of quietly hilarious lines, perhaps none more so than the Journal‘s deadpan clarification that “the Justice Department has the power to file […]

    / Jan 29, 2013 at 12:59 PM
  • This is about as dramatic as pictures of Jefferies get


    Federal Prosecutors Don’t Appreciate Former Jefferies Trader’s Vivid Imagination

    The Journal had an article this morning about how cash equities traders are getting used to having computers as coworkers but I say unto you: can a computer do this?1 52. On March 31, 2010, Customer A, an investment adviser to a private fund, asked Jefferies to find buyers for several MBS, including Lehman XS […]

    / Jan 28, 2013 at 5:31 PM
  • cut yer hair ya hippie


    At Long Last Egan-Jones Has Been Brought To Justice

    The SEC’s press release touting its triumph over rebel-without-a-cause rating agency Egan-Jones gives just the slightest impression that it was written in embarrassment. A trope of SEC press releases is “[thing we are enforcing] is among the most important things in the whole wide universe”; this is hard to say with a straight face when […]

    / Jan 22, 2013 at 4:07 PM
  • unperturbed


    SEC Insider Trading Investigation Reveals SEC Is Really Good At Insider Trading Investigations, Anyway

    Sheelah Kolhatkar’s cover story today in Bloomberg BusinessWeek about the SEC’s hunt to capture Steve Cohen is pretty amazing, and depending on your priors will leave you impressed or infuriated or both with the SEC. I vote both, but I always vote both. The core of it is the story of how Sanjay Wadhwa, a […]

    / Jan 17, 2013 at 11:48 AM
  • ruthbaderginsbergantoninscalia


    Supremes Set To Smack SEC on Statutes of Limitations

    Things aren’t going well for you when you find yourself at the receiving end of sharp words from both Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Ruth Bader Ginsberg. Well, that’s where the SEC finds itself in its effort to read a five-year statute of limitations creatively.

    / Jan 9, 2013 at 5:10 PM
  • a lament


    SEC: It’s Not Like Warren Buffett’s Right-Hand Man, Who Was In Charge Of Finding Companies To Acquire, Had Any Unusual Insight Into What Companies Warren Buffett Might Acquire

    The SEC probably came to the right decision in not taking any action against David Sokol but he’s still a delightful insider trading puzzle. Sokol, you’ll recall, is a former Berkshire Hathaway executive and Warren Buffett heir presumptive who was fired because he bought $10mm of Lubrizol stock, then pitched the company to Buffett without […]

    / Jan 4, 2013 at 11:09 AM
  • News

    SEC OKs Plan To Devastate Copper Market, Economy

    Always looking to keep things interesting, the SEC has approved plans for an exchange-traded fund that will “wreak havoc on the U.S. and global economy.”*

    / Dec 17, 2012 at 3:20 PM
  • Eichler does not seem particularly interested in being photographed for, y'know, a salesman of investment advisory services.


    Investment Manager Without Ethics Policy Acted Unethically

    Peter Eichler and his firm Aletheia Research and Management seem to have had a good run; Aletheia managed $10 billion and per DealBook “Mr. Eichler’s stellar investment performance attracted the likes of Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, which entrusted him with millions of dollars of their clients’ money.” But now that Aletheia is in bankruptcy […]

    / Dec 17, 2012 at 10:18 AM
  • Of course they could probably do it.


    The SEC Demanded That JPMorgan Provide More Disclosure About Goldman Sachs’s Prop Trading

    I enjoyed Bloomberg’s story about how the SEC was pestering JPMorgan to better disclose its proprietary trading activities well in advance of the London Whale fiasco. If you just read the headline you’d be all “oh look how prescient the SEC was,” but if you read the actual letters, not so much. Here is my […]

    / Dec 12, 2012 at 12:36 PM
  • netflix-ceo-reed-hastings


    Netflix CEO Doesn’t See Why Anyone Would Care How Much Netflix People Watch

    It’s easy to make fun of the SEC for wanting to sue Netflix over a Facebook post. Netflix, Facebook, and the SEC are all a little funny, and bring them all together and you get a delightful orgy of hip-five-years-ago clumsiness. Also, like, olds, get over yourselves, everyone is on Facebook, why should I call […]

    / Dec 7, 2012 at 10:14 AM
  • sallie-krawchek-2

    People Moves

    Who Wants To Be Chair(wo)man Of The SEC? (Update)

    Dealbook reports that Mary Schapiro has given official notice and come December 14th, she’s out of there. Names being floated as possible successors are said to include Sallie Krawcheck and the SEC’s director of enforcement, Robert Khuzami, but on the off-chance they’re not interested, want to throw yours or a loved one’s C.V. in the mix? Update: Apparently Obama plans to nominate Elisse Walter, an SEC commissioner and former FINRA VP, to take over. So you’ve probably got less of a shot at this point but anything can happen!

    / Nov 26, 2012 at 11:12 AM
  • Eh, I can live with this.


    JPMorgan And Credit Suisse Put Mortgage Problems Behind Them For All Time

    The SEC settled cases today with JPMorgan and Credit Suisse over “misleading investors in offerings of residential mortgage-backed securities” for a total of about $400 million, which the SEC plans to hand out to those misled investors. There’s been a lot of this sort of thing recently, so here’s a quick cheat sheet on who […]

    / Nov 16, 2012 at 5:18 PM
  • A lot to think about.


    House Subcommittee Has Some Suggestions For The Next Time Jon Corzine Runs A Financial Services Company

    This House Financial Services investigations subcommittee hatchet job on MF Global is, I don’t know, pretty reasonable and not-that-hatchety? It’s 100 pages and not exactly full of new news, but it’s a good read, stuff happens, there’s a clear story arc, heros and villains (kidding, just villains), you’re in suspense until the end. There’s some […]

    / Nov 16, 2012 at 11:33 AM
  • maryschapiro


    Bonus Watch ’12: SEC Whistleblowers

    The Securities and Exchange Commission said Thursday it received more than 3,000 tips in the past fiscal year. The SEC said the tips — 3,001 in all — came from all 50 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and from 49 countries. It announced the findings in a report required by the Dodd-Frank Act on the […]

    / Nov 15, 2012 at 6:27 PM
  • There will come a time in the future when most Americans have never seen this picture. Isn’t that upsetting? Let's do our part to keep its memory alive.


    Soon There Will Be Red Mutual Funds And Blue Mutual Funds

    One problem that a lot of people have noticed is that Americans do not spend enough time talking about politics. Yes, you can devote several hours a day to watching political news and forwarding political emails and signing secession petitions, but certain areas of life are not utterly infused with political rancor. Buying stocks is […]

    / Nov 14, 2012 at 5:46 PM
  • Tim Geithner is on the FSOC. If you have a group shot, preferably wacky-candid or in costume or whatever, send it along


    Financial Stability Council Is Unimpressed By Money Market Funds’ Contribution To Financial Stability

    One day somebody will write the history of arguments of the form “we should be allowed to trick people, it’s for their own good.” It sounds like a terrible argument doesn’t it? And yet. There are real points to be made against mark-to-market accounting at banks. And this Investment Company Institute paper from July arguing […]

    / Nov 14, 2012 at 12:41 PM
  • secbuilding


    SEC Staffers Have Made Remarkable Progress Re: Learning What Constitutes Appropriate Use Of A Work Computer

    If you had asked us two years or two months or two days ago if we thought that there would be a time in the near future when Securities and Exchange employees would not be getting reprimanded for watching porn on their work-issued computers, we would have said absolutely not. No judgment, but in our professional opinion, people do not go from, among other things:

    * Receiving “over 16,000 access denials for Internet websites classified by the Commission’s Internet filter as either “Sex” or “Pornography” in a one-month period”
    * Accessing “Internet pornography and downloading pornographic images to his SEC computer during work hours so frequently that, on some days, he spent eight hours accessing Internet pornography…downloading so much pornography to his government computer that he exhausted the available space on the computer hard drive and downloaded pornography to CDs or DVDs that he accumulated in boxes in his office.”
    *,,, and

    …to living a porn-free existence at l’office. Did we think they’d take baby steps toward that goal sure? But when you’ve tried to log on to your websites of choice, on average, 533 times a day, assuming weekends were worked, baby steps means getting yourself to a place where you can do a solid two hours of work each week without hitting up So you can imagine (and probably share in) our surprise to hear that, according to a probe by Interim Inspector General Jon Rymer re: “misuses of government resources,” the worst offenses one office was charged with claiming they needed iPads to do their jobs when really they just wanted to watch movies on them at home and going to hacker conferences without encrypting the data on their computers.

    Granted, it doesn’t look so great that the group that was running around with computers that didn’t even have anti-virus programs on their computers was the one that “is responsible for ensuring exchanges are following a series of voluntary guidelines…concerning computer audits, security, and capacity” but still, no ladyboyjuice while on the job– that’s huge.

    In a 43-page investigative report that probed the misuse of government resources, SEC Interim Inspector General Jon Rymer discovered that an office within the SEC’s Trading and Markets division spent over $1 million on unnecessary technology. The report also found that the staffers failed to protect their computers and devices from hackers, even as they were urging exchanges and clearing agencies to do just that. Although no breaches occurred, the staffers left sensitive stock exchange data exposed to potential cyber attacks because they failed to encrypt the devices or even install basic virus protection programs…On Friday Reuters reviewed a copy of the full report, which details an even broader array of problems, from misleading the SEC about the office’s need to buy Apple Inc products, to cases in which staffers took iPads and laptops home and used them primarily for pursuits such as personal banking, surfing the Web and downloading music and movies. The report says the staff may have brought the unprotected laptops to a Black Hat convention where hacking experts discuss the latest trends. They also used them to tap into public wireless networks and brought the devices along with them during exchange inspections…The report also found that some people who worked in the office had little or no experience with exchange technical matters.

    SEC staffers used govn’t computers for personal use – report [Reuters]
    Earlier: SEC Supervisor Surfed Tranny Porn To Cope With Stress Of The Job; SEC Official Who Surfed Tranny Porn To Deal With Stress Of The Job– Not Alone!;

    / Nov 12, 2012 at 1:53 PM
  • So that's nice then.


    JPMorgan May Soon Be Rid Of One Of Many Bear Stearns Mortgage Investigations

    Mortgage-backed securities are sort of conceptually simple – put mortgages in a pot, stir, sell layers of resulting goop – but complex in execution; they have not only economic but also legal and accounting and bankruptcy purposes and so their offering documents are long and boring and filled with dotted and dashed lines and arrows […]

    / Nov 7, 2012 at 5:46 PM
  • News

    Securities And Exchange Commission To Make A Couple Calls Re: Vikram Pandit’s Breakup With Citi

    The Securities and Exchange Commission has launched a probe into the messy departure of Vikram Pandit as chief executive of Citigroup and whether the board of directors of the big bank properly disclosed his ouster, the FOX Business Network has learned. One person familiar with the matter says the SEC’s inquiry is informal and has not reached the level of a full-blown investigation. But it is a sign the SEC is clearly interested in the circumstances surrounding Pandit’s official “resignation” from the big bank. Those details have been in dispute since the October 16 announcement. Both Pandit and Citigroup chairman Michael O’Neill have said in interviews and during conference calls with analysts that the decision was Pandit’s to leave the firm. [FBN, earlier]

    / Oct 23, 2012 at 6:59 PM
  • Yorkville President Mark Angelo in happier, though still pensive, times


    The SEC Is Pretty Sure It’s Better At Investment Valuation Than At Least One Hedge Fund

    The SEC has a thing called the Aberrational Performance Inquiry that runs a screen of hedge funds, selects the ones whose performance looks too good to be true, then sees if it is. This raises questions from the empirical (what is the conversion rate of “looks too good to be true” to “is in fact […]

    / Oct 17, 2012 at 1:43 PM
  • News

    Fabulous Fab To Take The Stand Next Summer

    Three years after Fabrice Touree was sued by the Securities and Exchange Commission for allegedly misleading investors, the (soon-to-be) Dr. of Economics and Love will go to trial, assuming finals don’t pose a conflict.

    U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan set the July 15 trial date at the end of a hearing in which an SEC lawyer argued that she should reinstate some claims against Tourre that another judge dismissed earlier in the case. Last year, U.S. District Judge Barbara Jones threw out some of the SEC’s claims after Tourre argued that he couldn’t be held liable under U.S. securities law for transactions that occurred outside the country. The SEC argued today that the claims should be reinstated because of a recent appeals court ruling that applied a broader definition of “domestic securities transaction” than the one used by Jones. Tourre’s case was assigned to Forrest last week.
    Tourre, 33, who is studying for a Ph.D. in economics at the University of Chicago, wasn’t present in the courtroom today. His lawyer, Pamela Chepiga, told Forrest that she will check with her client to make sure there is no conflict between his exams and the trial date.

    Goldman Sachs’s Tourre Gets July 15 Trial Date [Bloomberg]

    / Oct 12, 2012 at 4:59 PM
  • It's a dark pool of lava, or something, whatever.


    Dark Pool Operator Fined For Letting Its Computer Operator Store Data On The Wrong Computer

    Much success in financial innovation is due to coming up with a sexy name; “dark pool” just grabs the imagination more than “alternative trading system with undisplayed orders.” The downside, though, is that it also seems to have grabbed the SEC’s imagination, which I suspect is part of the explanation for the SEC’s rather odd […]

    / Oct 4, 2012 at 4:59 PM
  • Your money is safe with this lion, who is unfamiliar with the word "homophone"

    Hedge Funds, News

    SEC Advises Investors To Read Hedge Fund Documents, Especially The Secret Ones Containing All The Fraud

    I think if I were running a small hedge fund far from prying eyes, every quarter I’d take a look at my performance and decide if I felt good about it, and then (1) if I did I’d take a nice chunk of the profits for myself and (2) if I didn’t then I’d drink […]

    / Oct 3, 2012 at 5:35 PM
  • Isn't it weird that robot traders are sort of perceived as dorky math-nerd robots but actual traders all, like, played lacrosse? This robot probably plays lacrosse.


    Broker Fined For Helping Some Robots Rip Off Other Robots

    What is your model of the SEC’s recent crackdown on the naughty forms of high-frequency trading? I don’t really like mine, and my model of high-frequency trading in general is pretty weak, so I hesitate to speculate. Here is me hesitating. Okay! Now let’s speculate. Go read this this SEC press release, or don’t really, […]

    / Sep 25, 2012 at 5:57 PM
  • FYI, never search Google Images for "computer penis"


    NYSE Fined For Selling Product That Was Too Good

    The standard illustration of the efficient markets hypothesis is the thing about the economists and the $20 bill on the ground, but it is so old and stale at this point that Matt Yglesias had to invent a new version this week, and it’s something like “if you find a penis-enlarging injection on the ground, […]

    / Sep 14, 2012 at 3:01 PM

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