Friday, May 29, 2020

Public Companies Investigated for PPP Loans


The SEC is investigating public companies who took PPP loans to ensure that their PPP applications are consistent with their public filings.

Bloomberg News is reporting that the SEC has Th sent letters to some recipients of the forgivable loans seeking information about how the funds were spent and copies of loan applications

The news service reported that nearly 200 public companies received PPP funds at that level, but the SEC’s inquiry encompasses fewer than a dozen of those firms.

https://www.pymnts.com/loans/2020/sec-probing-public-firms-ppp-funds/

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The national securities law firm of Sallah Astarita & Cox, LLC is comprised of experienced securities attorneys and former SEC Staff attorneys representing investors, financial professionals and public companies in private litigation and SEC investigations, with decades of experience. Call 212-509-6544 for more information.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

SEC Issues Agenda for June 1 Meeting of the Fixed Income Market Structure Advisory Committee

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Unregistered $25.5 Million ICO Issuer to Return Money for Distribution to Investors

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced charges against blockchain services company BitClave PTE Ltd. headquartered in San Jose, California, for conducting an unregistered initial coin offering (ICO) of digital asset securities. …

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Have a securities law question? Call Sallah Astarita & Cox at 212-509-6544.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

DOJ Closes Its Senator Insider Trading Investigation, Except for Burr

As we posted last week, the FBI was apparently investigating Senators Loeffler, Feinstein, Inhofe and Burr for possible insider trading. Yesterday it announced that it was closing the investigation of all except Burr.

It is important to note that there were probably two investigations going on, one by the FBI and one by the SEC. The SEC's investigations are private, so we won't know about them.

The FBI investigation would be part of a criminal investigation, and given the claims that have been reported in the press by the Senators, it is not much of a surprise that the criminal investigations are closed. There is no word on a pending, or closed SEC investigation.

Feinstein claims her account is in a blind trust, Loeffler claims that her husband was involved in the trades with no involvement by her. Inhofe's trades were reportedly sales of tech companies, not directly coronavirus related, and he claims that he gave instructions in 2018 to his broker to move his portfolio entirely out of stocks and into mutual funds in December 2018. He stated that his adviser has been doing so since then, and he was not aware of or consulted about any transactions.

While Feinstein and Inhofe may have valid defenses, Loeffler's trades are more problematic given the allegation that she sold the same day White House officials briefed her and her Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee colleagues about the coronavirus. Her sales, and purchases were coronavirus related, according to press reports.


The fact that the DOJ has shut down a criminal investigation does not mean that the SEC is not investigating. Given the fact that penalties for insider trading from the SEC can be up to three times the profit gained, or loss avoided, that is a significant penalty.

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Mark Astarita is a nationally recognized securities fraud attorney representing investors and financial professionals in a wide variety of arbitration, litigation and investigative matters. He can be reached at 212-509-6544 or by email at mja@sallahlaw.com



Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Private Equity Firm Ares Management LLC Charged With Compliance Failures

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that Ares Management LLC, a Los Angeles-based private equity firm and registered investment adviser, has agreed to pay one million dollars to settle charges that it failed to implement and…

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Friday, May 22, 2020

SEC Charges Owner of Film Distribution Company with Defrauding Publicly Traded Fund

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced charges against William Sadleir, the owner of a film distribution company, for defrauding a publicly traded fund of at least $13.8 million.  The SEC alleges that BlackRock Multi-Sector Income…

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SEC Announces Virtual Conference on Municipal Securities Disclosure

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that it has rescheduled its conference entitled “Spotlight on Transparency: A Discussion of Secondary Market Municipal Securities Disclosure Practices” for June 16, 2020. The conference is open to…

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SEC Shuts Down Fraudulent Investment Adviser Targeting Senior Citizens

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that it has filed an emergency action and obtained a temporary restraining order and asset freeze against a California-registered investment adviser and his entities to halt an ongoing Ponzi scheme…

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Thursday, May 21, 2020

SEC Issues Agenda for May 27 Meeting of the Asset Management Advisory Committee

The Securities and Exchange Commission today released the agenda for the May 27 meeting of the Asset Management Advisory Committee (AMAC).  AMAC was formed to provide the Commission with diverse perspectives on asset management and related advice…

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SEC Adopts Amendments to Improve Financial Disclosures about Acquisitions and Dispositions of Businesses

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that it has voted to adopt amendments to its rules and forms to improve for investors the financial information about acquired or disposed businesses, facilitate more timely access to capital, and…

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Wednesday, May 20, 2020

SEC Announces 2020 Small Business Forum, to Be Held Virtually

The Securities and Exchange Commission will virtually host its 39th annual Government-Business Forum on Small Business Capital Formation on the afternoon of June 18, 2020.  The Forum is a unique event where members of the public and private sectors…

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