Daily Archives: April 18, 2023, 3:10 pm

SEC Settles Multi-Tiered Insider Trading Case Against Convicted Fraudster, His Friend and Tippee, and a Former IIIumina Accountant

On April 11, 2023, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York entered a final judgment against Donald G. Blakstad, a self-employed individual from San Diego. On November 21, 2022, the Court entered final judgments against Robert J. Maron, a personal friend of Blakstad, and Martha Patricia Bustos, a former accountant at Illumina, Inc. and close…

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SEC Charges Investment Adviser Betterment for Misstatements Concerning Tax Loss Harvesting Service

The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged investment advisory firm Betterment LLC for material misstatements and omissions related to its automated tax loss harvesting service (TLH), failing to provide clients with notice of changes to contracts, and failing to maintain certain required books and records. To settle the charges, Betterment agreed to pay a $9 million penalty and to distribute funds…

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U.S. Supreme Court to hear dispute over Slack’s direct stock listing | Reuters

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to hear a bid by Slack Technologies Inc, part of Salesforce Inc (CRM.N), to avoid a lawsuit accusing the workplace communication software company of misstatements in its 2019 direct listing – an alternative to an initial public offering. The justices took up San Francisco-based Slack’s appeal of a lower court’s ruling last year…

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FTX celebrity promoters say crypto investors cannot sue over accounts | Reuters

The proposed class action in Miami alleges that FTX yield-bearing accounts were unregistered securities that were unlawfully sold in the United States, which required the promoters to disclose the compensation they received. The lawsuit seeks damages from FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried alongside several celebrities who promoted FTX including David, the creator of TV shows “Seinfeld” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” It…

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SEC Chair Gensler to Defend Climate, Crypto Plans Before GOP-Led Panel – WSJ

Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler is set to defend his regulatory agenda Tuesday before a House panel that has grown hostile to his plans under Republican leadership of the committee. “The SEC is the cop on the beat watching out for your constituents,” Mr. Gensler said in prepared remarks for the hearing before the House Financial Services Committee.…

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The SEC Comes for Bittrex – Bloomberg

Nobody wants to hear it! Ooh, if we enforce traditional securities laws without adapting them to crypto, there will be no crypto trading in the US: fine! The SEC’s majority view is just crystal clear here: Virtually all crypto tokens are securities. Securities cannot legally be traded, in the US, except on a registered securities exchange. Hahaha good luck registering your…

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SEC Lays Its Cards on the Table With Assertion That DeFi Falls Under Securities Rules

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) warning shot last week that decentralized finance (DeFi) could be thrown into its expanding definition of what makes a securities exchange is the latest move to formalize what Chairman Gary Gensler has been saying: Crypto belongs in the securities world and will be regulated that way. The crypto industry had long pleaded for…

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Cybersecurity-Related Securities Suit Allegations Against Okta Dismissed | The D&O Diary

As I noted in my year-end round up of D&O related issues (here), plaintiffs’ lawyers have continued to file securities class action lawsuits following cybersecurity incidents, even though the plaintiffs’ track record in these kinds of lawsuits generally has been poor. Among the cybersecurity-related securities lawsuits filed last year was the suit against cloud-based software company Okta relating in part…

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