Cease and Desist Orders

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SEC’s First Action Based On Dodd-Frank Muni Adviser Fraud Section

The SEC has been focusing on municipal bond offerings, filing a series of enforcement actions. An action brought this week is the first, however, based on the Dodd-Frank fraud section related to municipal advisers. The action...more

Consultants, Investment Advisers, and Compliance

It is important for registered investment advisers to determine if the correct workers – regardless of employee or consultant labels — have been designated as Access Persons. Originally published as a guest post on Hedge...more

Stop Faxing

I’ve long thought that sending faxes was a pretty silly means of communication. Don’t send me a fax. I don’t want it. At some point I’m hoping that even my kids’ doctor’s office will get dragged into the 20th century and...more

When Customer Supply Contracts Lead to Trouble: Exclusive Dealing Provisions Result in FTC Monopolization Action against Invibio

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) continues to aggressively enforce the antitrust laws. On April 27, 2016, the FTC took action against Victrex, plc and its wholly owned subsidiaries, Invibio, Inc. and Invibio Limited...more

SEC Sanctions Audit Firm, Partner Tied to Custody Rule

Custody Rule cases are rapidly becoming a staple of SEC enforcement. Rule 206(4)-2 requires registered investment advisers with custody of client funds or securities to implement certain controls to protect those assets....more

The SEC’s Increasing Use of Data Analysis

The Commission has increasingly focused on data analysis as an aid to its enforcement program. Two recent cases brought against investment advisers for cherry picking illustrate different facets of the approach....more

SEC Brings Two Financial Fraud Actions

Financial fraud has long been a staple of SEC enforcement. In the wake of the market crisis the agency has attempted to once again focus on the area creating, for example, a financial fraud task force two years ago. Last...more

Appellate Court Notes

Appellate Court Advance Release Opinions: AC38454 - In re Daniel N. AC36701 - State v. Adams - AC36701 Dissent - State v. Adams - AC37362 - Deutsche Bank National Trust Co. v. Thompson...more

Novartis FCPA Enforcement Action, Part II

Yesterday, I used a quotation from the Oscar winning animator, Chuck Jones who described two of his well-known creations, Roadrunner and Wily E. Coyote, by referring to philosopher George Santayana’s description of fanaticism...more

Novartis FCPA Enforcement Action, Part I

The philosopher George Santayana is usually best remembered for the pithy saying, ‘Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Santayana was an essayist, poet, professor and novelist. According to...more

Lessons from Qualcomm

Last week the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) concluded a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FPCA) enforcement action against Qualcomm Inc. for violations on the Accounting Provisions of the FCPA, including both the...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The SEC had a significant courtroom victory this week, prevailing in the Payton insider trading trial. A jury returned a verdict in favor of the agency. ...more

More FCPA Grief Involving Gifts, Travel & Entertainment: PTC in China – Part III

I have been exploring the PTC Inc. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) settlement this week. It included a Non-Prosecution Agreement (NPA) from the Department of Justice (DOJ) with two Chinese subsidiaries and a Cease and...more

More FCPA Grief Involving Gifts, Travel & Entertainment: PTC in China – Part II

Yesterday I began a (now) three-part series on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) enforcement actions involving PTC Inc. (PTC), Parametric Technology (Shanghai) Software Co. Ltd. and Parametric Technology (Hong Kong)...more

More FCPA Grief Involving Gifts, Travel & Entertainment: PTC in China – Part I

Sometimes you have to wonder just how long it will take before US companies realize (1) there is a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and (2) it applies in China as yesterday both the Department of Justice (DOJ) and...more

Another SEC Insider Trading Case As An Administrative Proceeding

The SEC filed another settled insider trading case. In the Matter of Abdallah Fadel, Adm. Proc. File No. 3-17111 (February 10, 2016). While the case is straight forward, what may be of interest is the fact that it is the...more

SEC Files Settled Financial Fraud Action

One of the key products of Monsanto Company is weed killer Roundup, sold to retailers and distributors but not directly to growers. After the product came off patent generics began to erode its profits. ...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The Commission filed another group of settled actions under its initiative regarding municipal bond underwriters. This time a group of fourteen actions were filed. Each centered largely on claims that the underwriter failed...more

SEC, NYAG Sanction Three Dark Pools

The SEC and the New York Attorney General announced settlements with Barclays Capital Inc. and Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC centered on the operation of dark pool trading venues. In the Matter of Barclays Capital Inc.,...more

SEC Brings Another Insider Trading Administrative Proceeding

The SEC filed another settled insider trading action, charging a corporate executive. The action is not remarkable and is straight forward. What makes it noteworthy, however, is that the case is the fourth insider trading...more

SEC-JPMorgan Securities Settle False Advertising Action

The holiday season may be a time of good cheer. Wall Street banks may not agree, however, at least for this year. As the season began to unfold JPMorgan settled a Commission action centered on conflicts by admitting the facts...more

IA Settles With SEC, USAO After Letter to Investors Admitting Losses

The SEC and the Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s Office brought actions against a hedge fund adviser who lost most of the money raised from investors through risky trading while trying to conceal that fact from them, the brokers and...more

Adviser Settles False Performance Claims With SEC

The SEC filed a settled action involving a registered investment adviser that made false statements in marketing materials about a strategy utilized by a sub-adviser. The adviser failed to evaluate statements in the materials...more

New York Sacks Daily Fantasy Sports; Gives Pass to Traditional Fantasy Sports

The New York attorney general issued a cease and desist order to a number of daily fantasy sports (DFS) operators alleging that DFS constitutes illegal gambling under NY state law. According to the AG’s interpretation, DFS...more

SEC Brings Actions Against Ponzi Schemer, Client

Ponzi scheme cases have, of course, become a staple of SEC enforcement since the discovery of Madoff’s unprecedented scheme. While there seems to be a virtually endless number of these cases centered on the preverbal “to good...more

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