SAC Hedge Fund Agrees to Largest Ever Insider Trading Penalty

Wednesday, November 06, 2013
Steven Cohen

A Wall Street hedge fund caught using insider information to trade shares of pharmaceutical and technology stocks has agreed to pay the largest penalty ever for such a crime.


SAC Capital reached a deal with the U.S. Department of Justice to pay an historic $1.8 billion to resolve criminal and civil charges stemming from the insider trading.


U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who brought the charges back in July, described the firm as a “veritable magnet for market cheaters” that “seeded itself in with corrupt traders,” according to Politico.


Bharara told the media this week that a criminal investigation is ongoing, and that the Justice Department is not yet done with SAC, whose deal shields certain SAC corporate entities from further prosecution for insider trading between 1999 and December 2012.


But the agreement provided no immunity to firm employees who could still face charges.


So far criminal charges haven’t been filed against SAC founder Steven Cohen, although he is currently fighting civil charges that he failed to supervise employees accused of insider trading.


“Sometimes blameworthy institutions need to be held accountable too,” Bharara said. “No institution should rest easy in the belief that it is too big to jail. That is a moral hazard that a just society can ill-afford.”

-Noel Brinkerhoff


To Learn More:

Justice Strikes $1.8 Billion Deal with SAC Hedge Fund (by Zachary Warmbrodt, Politico)

Justice Dept. Files Largest Insider Trading Case in History (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)


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