It’s been a busy and somewhat productive year for the SEC as they end the year with another insider trading (+6% YTD @ 76 TrendSignal pts.) conviction, this time against Michael Steinberg, a direct report to SAC Capital Advisors’ Steven Cohen.
The verdict hands the government a signature victory in its pincerlike pursuit of SAC, the giant fund run by billionaire stock picker Cohen. Coming just weeks after SAC pleaded guilty to insider trading charges and agreed to pay a record $1.2 billion penalty, Mr. Steinberg’s conviction further clouds the future of a firm that was once the envy of Wall Street. And it may also embolden federal authorities in their decade-long investigation of SAC.
The broader media focus on Wall Street Corruption (-1 @ 88 pts.) should continue to gain media traction as apparently the FBI is investigating whether some SAC employees used inside information to make trades in shares and options of Weight Watchers, Intermune and Gymboree, according to people briefed on the matter. Some investigators, the people said, are also holding out hope that Mr. Steinberg, staring at years in prison, will have a change of heart and cooperate with the broader investigation.
How are these two Trending in the Broader Media?
Wall Street Corruption (-1 @ 88 pts.)
Insider Trading (+6% YTD @ 76 pts.)
Even without his cooperation, Mr. Steinberg’s conviction now raises the likelihood that Mr. Cohen, after avoiding criminal charges for years, will face continued scrutiny.