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Articles Tagged with insider trading

Everyone has heard of insider trading, but what is it really? Essentially, as an “insider,” you are not allowed to make beneficial trades unfairly. To prove insider trading, the federal government must show that the information was embargoed or confidential prior to the execution of the trade.

In this case, a Chicago physician is being accused of purchasing shares of a California-based biotech company that recently announced positive results of a new cancer treatment. The physician is accused of making the trade before the company announced the results publicly. Hence, insider trading. 

According to federal prosecutors, the defendant used his position to acquire confidential information that was embargoed for public disclosure. He then used that information to make a trade prior to the announcement of a major success and is now accused of insider trading. Federal prosecutors accuse the doctor of making $134,000 off the illegal trade, purchasing over 8,000 shares and then selling them shortly after the announcement. 

https://www.chicagocriminallawyerblog.com/files/2017/02/Chicago_Stock_Exchange_Building.tif_-214x300.jpgThe breach of trust in insider trading is not as obvious as other forms of breach of trust. The basic premise of the law is that there is an implicit trust by members of the public that financial institutions will follow the letter of the law. However, there are those whose interest in fast profits far outweigh any moral considerations. They make use of their privileged access to information in order to make decisions that are advantageous to them whilst simultaneously expecting the public to take up the cost of their mistakes. The public is effectively being asked to gamble with all the odds stacked against them. This is the essence of insider trading and it is precisely the behavior that the courts try to punish.

Understanding the Basic Premises and Assumptions that Underpin the Law

The basic premise of a functional market is the freedom to trade and that requires information that is readily available, or at the very least legitimately acquired. The inside traders tend to skip this important step, with devastating impact on their business rivals. A classic case in point is where a trade is able to get a tip off a potential merger, acquisition, or redundancy. He or she then shares this vital information with favored accomplices so that they can make a quick profit or alternatively cut their losses. There have been some defendants who have pleaded innocence, arguing that they did not know what they were committing a SEC (Securities Exchange Commission) violation.

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