Enforcement Actions Securities & Exchange Commission

News & Analysis as of

SEC Files It's First Robocop Cherry Picking Action

When the SEC announced it financial fraud task force and a related data initiative to facilitate the identification of situations where the company “cooked the books,” many dubbed the data program “Robocop.” While the SEC may...more

SEC Commissioner: Don’t Hold CCOs Accountable for Misdeeds of Advisers

SEC Commissioner Daniel Gallagher, in a speech on June 25, 2015, said that a perceived trend by the SEC toward “strict liability” for chief compliance officers (CCOs) is “sending a troubling message.” The statement...more

Vivek Ranadivé and Wisconsin IA Both Big into Cherrypicking, According to Sources

Here’s a thing I think I know about billionaires: They’ve made piles and piles of money doing something someone somewhere surely advised them not to do because it was a dumb idea. Then later, actually dumb ideas come along...more

SEC’s Data-Driven Analysis Identifies Allegedly Improper Trade Allocations by Investment Advisor

Relying on a data-driven statistical analysis conducted by the Division of Economic and Risk Analysis (DERA), the SEC recently commenced administrative proceedings against an investment advisor, Welhouse & Associates, Inc.,...more

SEC Charges Mutual Fund Board Members and Investment Adviser with Violations of Section 15(c) For Deficient Advisory Contract...

On June 17, 2015, the SEC charged Commonwealth Capital Management (“CCM”), an investment adviser to various mutual funds within World Funds Trust (“WFT”) and World Funds, Inc. (“WFI”), for violating Section 15(c) of the...more

SEC Charges Companies with Unregistered Broker-Dealer Activity Related to EB-5 Investment

On June 23, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged two companies with unregistered broker activity related to EB-5 visa investments. SEC alleged that the companies brokered more than $79 million in EB-5...more

Corporate Investigations & White Collar Defense - June 2015

The Unfolding FIFA Scandal: Will the DOJ Show the Banks a Red Card? - Why it matters: The worldwide soccer community has for years decried the brazen corruption that permeated FIFA, international soccer’s governing...more

SEC Charges KKR With Misallocating Broken Deal Expenses

Everyone knew the SEC would pursue a marquee-name private equity sponsor for misallocating expenses. It finally happened, with KKR settling charges for misallocating “broken deal” expenses. Charges against others are likely...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The SEC brought another custody rule action this week – against the outside auditors alleging that one examination was insufficient and the others incomplete thereby causing the client to violate the surprise audit...more

Financial Services Weekly News Roundup - June 2015 #4

Regulatory Developments - Client Alert: SEC Proposes Pay for Performance Rules: Goodwin Procter’s Capital Markets practice has issued a Client Alert on the SEC’s proposed rule that would require most public...more

SEC Files Another Suspicious Trading Case

Outsized trades continue to draw SEC scrutiny and enforcement actions – even where the agency does not have the evidence to fully plead a claim. Despite the difficulties of these so-called “suspicious” trading cases, in many...more

FCPA Compliance and Ethics Report-Episode 172-Scott Killingsworth on Personal Liability of CCOs [Video]

In this episode I visit with Scott Killingsworth on the recent SEC enforcement action in the SFX matter. In that case, the SEC held the CCO personally liability. We discuss the underlying facts, prior SEC pronouncements the...more

SEC Brings First Unregistered Broker Charges Based on EB-5 Program

The EB-5 program was designed to create a path to becoming a permanent residence in the U.S. for certain immigrants while facilitating job creation in the United States. Initiated in 1990, the program gives a foreign...more

SEC Announces First Charges Against Underwriters under MCDC Initiative

On June 18, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced enforcement actions against 36 municipal bond underwriters, the first enforcement actions against underwriters brought by the SEC under the...more

Gallagher Chides Commission for Sanctioning IA CCO’S

In a strongly-worded public statement last week, SEC Commissioner Gallagher chided the Commission for “cutting off the noses of CCO’s to spite its face.” Explaining his dissent in two recent enforcement actions imposing...more

California Brokers Plead Guilty to Insider Trading of Ardea Biosciences, Inc. Stock

On June 9, Chad Wiegand and Akis Eracleous, two San-Diego based brokers, pled guilty in California district court to trading in Ardea Biosciences, Inc. stock with inside information. Mr. Wiegand and Mr. Eracleous,...more

SEC Rolls Out First Wave of MCDC Settlements with Underwriters

Last Thursday, the SEC announced it reached settlement agreements with 36 municipal securities underwriting firms pursuant to its Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation (MCDC) Initiative.  These settlements mark...more

SEC Sanctions Independent Trustees for Approving Mutual Fund Advisory Contract without Sufficient Information

Underscoring the need for independent trustees to act vigilantly, a recent SEC consent order issued in an enforcement action imposed discipline on a mutual fund's independent trustees, its investment advisor, and the...more

Bridging the Week - June 2015 #4

Investment Adviser Chief Compliance Officer Blamed in SEC Lawsuit for President’s Theft of Client Funds; SEC Commissioner Criticizes Enforcement Actions Against CCOs Generally - The Securities and Exchange Commission...more

SEC Commissioner Gallagher: Guidance is Needed For IA CCOs

SEC Commissioner Daniel Gallagher published a statement explaining his dissent in two recent enforcement actions in which the Chief Compliance Officer of an investment adviser was charged, noting that the trend in such...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The Commission chose to appeal the decision in Hill v. SEC in which the Court held that the manner in which SEC Administrative Law Judges are retained violates the Appointment Clause of the Constitution. While the Court...more

Recent Investment Management Developments - June 2015

In This Issue: - SEC Proposes Changes to Reporting and Disclosure Obligations for Investment Companies and Advisers - SEC Charges Hedge Fund Executives and External Auditor for Improper Disclosure of Expense...more

Can “Bad Actors” Wave Goodbye to SEC Waivers?

The SEC has been thinking harder before waiving automatic disqualifications that the federal securities laws and regulations impose on so-called "bad actors." Without such waivers, companies may be barred from, among...more

SEC Halts “Smart Contract” Exchange Built on Silicon Valley Start-Ups

Two entrepreneurs wanted to create a business that centered on valuing private start-up companies. They experimented with models that began with a variation of “fantasy sports,” changed to a contest and became a game. It...more

The SEC Justifies its Home Court Advantage

In virtually every sport, playing on one’s “home court” is recognized as a distinct advantage over a visiting team as a result of playing on a familiar field and in front of rabid fans. The same is true in virtually every...more

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