Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Record number of insider trading crimes hits Sweden in 2016 / Martin

02/02/2017. | This post has no Comments

Bloomberg reports: One of the most honest places on the planet is in the grip of a financial crime wave.

In the last month alone, Sweden has opened probes into possible wrongdoing by a billionaire, a former finance minister, the national property board, a former tech CEO and one of his company’s directors. The alleged crimes range from insider trading to bribery.

Transparency International last week cited “leading people” losing their “ethical compass” in downgrading Sweden one level in the watchdog’s annual ranking of the least-corrupt countries — to No. 4 after Denmark, New Zealand and Finland. The Reputation Institute, a Chicago-based consulting firm, hailed Sweden as the world’s “most reputable” country just last summer.

The flurry of investigations “is a wake-up call” for a society that has gotten used to thinking it’s squeaky clean, according to Madeleine Leijonhufvud, a criminal law professor at Stockholm University and former chairwoman of the Swedish Anti-Corruption Institute. “We’re starting to realize that not everything is OK.”

Record High

The number of insider crimes reported in this country of 10 million people soared 53 percent last year to a record 338, while the number of bribery cases jumped 47 percent to 246, a seven-year high, government data show.

Authorities are cracking down on economic crime, enacting a new law on market abuse, criminalizing more “behaviors” and introducing harsher penalties. Gunilla Sandblom, the Economic Crime Authority’s chief prosecutor, said the surge in insider trading is particularly troubling because it can erode confidence in the country’s capital markets and deter investment.

“The increase is serious,” Sandblom said by phone, attributing the spike in part to better oversight by regulators and an uptick in the number of listings by smaller companies inexperienced in vetting their own procedures. “During raids, we’ve seen documents containing insider information lying around the photocopier, allowing anyone working there to see and act upon it,” she said.

Read full story from Bloomberg >

Insider Trading Arrests in Sweden – Lars Soderfjell & Johan Carlstrom from Fingerprint Cards AB / Martin

24/01/2017. | This post has no Comments

Bloomberg: Fingerprint Cards AB – a technology company that as recently as 2015 delivered investors a 1,600 percent stock-price gain now finds its name at the center of a criminal investigation in Scandinavia.

Sweden’s crime authority arrested current and former officials at Fingerprint Cards AB on suspicion of aggravated insider trading, sending shares of the maker of biometric sensors for smartphones to a 15-month low on Monday.

“Overall, there have been far too many twists and turns and strange events connected to Fingerprint,” Joacim Olsson, chief executive at the Swedish Shareholders’ Association, said by phone. “At some level, this indicates that the company hasn’t matured to the same degree that it has grown.”

Board member Lars Soderfjell and former Chief Executive Officer Johan Carlstrom were taken into custody, the Swedish Economic Crime Authority said on Monday. Authorities became suspicious after registering “large-scale sales” in Fingerprint shares before a Dec. 8 profit warning that subsequently pushed the stock down as much as 18 percent.

The investigation marks a setback in Fingerprint’s attempts to distance itself from Carlstrom, who’s also been charged separately for insider trading while he was still CEO. Meanwhile, the company is struggling to stay competitive as rivals offer cheaper alternatives to the technology that brought Fingerprint to fame: sensors used by the likes of LG Electronics Inc. and Lenovo Group Ltd.

The company says the arrests are linked to the individuals in question only, and don’t affect its operations.

Read full story from Bloomberg

Review of the Market Abuse Directive / Ahto

15/01/2012. | This post has no Comments

SEC Makes S&P Downgrade Inquiries / Ahto

12/08/2011. | This post has no Comments

According to media-sources the Securities and Exchange Commission has asked credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s to disclose who within its ranks knew of its decision to downgrade US debt before it was announced last week, as part of a preliminary look into potential insider trading, people familiar with the matter say.

The inquiry was made by the SEC’s examination staff, which has oversight of credit rating firms, one person familiar with the matter said. The exam staff can make referrals to the SEC’s enforcement division if it believes any laws have been violated, but the inquiry might not result in a referral.

This person said they were looking at who had the information as a starting point. Allegedly the agency is not aware of a leak from an S&P insider.

Proving someone leaked information about the downgrade, or traded ahead of it, could be challenging. Many traders anticipated the downgrade and bets could occur across numerous securities or currencies without inside information. In a traditional insider trading case, there is often a more predictable correlation between a company’s stock price and a particular development.

The inquiry comes as the SEC has sought to be more pro-active in its oversight responsibilities. The agency launched specialized units within its enforcement division last year and has revised the approach of its examination group after hiring new leadership.

The exam group first gained the ability to inspect credit rating agencies in 2007. Those powers grew following the passage of the Dodd-Frank law last year. The exam group, led by Carlo di Florio, has been working more closely with the enforcement division in its review of registered firms since the SEC reorganized those divisions.

If the investigation results in a case, it would not be the first time government-related information leaked or a rating firm employee was charged with insider trading.

The SEC’s look comes as the Senate banking committee has said it is looking at S&P’s decision.

Estonian businessman Tool faces court over Arco Vara bourse manipulation / Siim

17/11/2009. Tags: , , , , , , | This post has no Comments

The Baltic Cource wrote that the North Estonian District Prosecutor’s Office sent to court a criminal case accusing a prominent Estonian businessman Toomas Tool and former SEB bank broker Karoly Kirber of manipulating the securities market, namely the share price of real estate company Arco Vara.

Tool is being accused of, while being an authorised representative of his wife, giving selling orders of a large amount of shares at a SEB account connected to his wife, to SEB bank broker Karoly Kirber on July 14-21, 2008. The order specified selling the shares at a price that became gradually lower. The aim of that was to bring the market price of Arco Vara share below 0.56 euro, which enabled Tool to influence other large owners of Arco Vara in making decisions.

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