Insider Trading Investigation Widens But Is it Insider Trading?

The Department of Justice has now filed new charges as part of its national investigation of insider trading. A California consultant for an expert networking firm was charged with selling insider info to a hedge find on Nvidia Corp and Marvell Technology for $200,000. The hedge fund is presently unidentified. Expert networking companies match investors with specialists who provide insights into specific markets. Marvell makes chips for the Blackberry phone and Nvidia creates electronics. Last month the government issued subpoenas to the $12 billion fund SAC Capital Advisors, one day after hedge funds Level Global Investors LP and Diamondback Capital Management LLC were raided by the FBI. The central question at trial, if these cases reach trial, will be when is something research analysis and when is it insider information? There is no bright line, interestingly. Traditionally, insider trading is defined as trading of on a coporation stock or other securities by individuals with access to non public info about the company. Securities analysts gather, compile information on companies and issue recommendations to traders. It is legal if their reports may include non material non public information and public info. However, there is actual statutory definition of insider trading.