Tuesday, June 20, 2006

More on Options Timing Probe

Posted here is a recent discussion of the SEC Options Timing Probe.  The LA Times here adds a new dimension to the discussion, by stating that "authorities confirmed that they also were looking into possible instances of so-called spring-loading."  For a lesson on the terms being used here, check out Erik Lie's website here, where he defines springing-loading.   

The bottom line may be whether insiders received an unfair benefit.  Did they breach a fiduciary duty? Was there a deprivation of honest services?  With broad federal statutes, this can be pretty frightening to those who lived obliviously in a pre-Sarbanes Oxley world.   Is it a whole new game now? And will the government recognize the new arena and leave any improprieties found to shareholder or other civil lawsuits?  Or will this become a criminal division matter? Stay tuned.

(esp)

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