Ford O'Brien, LLP

New York Securities Law Blog

Learn From Elon Musk

Many lessons cover what to do but some of the most valuable lessons to learn cover what not to do. Elon Musk - CEO and founder of companies such as Tesla and SpaceX - recently provided one of those lessons by allowing his flair for self-promotion to get him in hot water with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). 

 

NFL Player Faces 25 Years In Prison For Insider Trading

The National Football League (NFL) has dealt with many negative headlines over the years when it comes to the behavior of players, coaches, and executives. Unfortunately, incidents involving allegations of domestic violence, drunk driving, and substance abuse have become a tradition nearly as familiar as the Super Bowl. 

The charges recently levied against linebacker Mychal Kendricks were anything but common for NFL players, raising eyebrows throughout the league and around the nation. 

Cryptocurrency Goes Old School

Cryptocurrencies have been touted as revolutionary. Such assertions are debatable but developments such as Morgan Stanley planning to trade Bitcoin for its clients show that cryptocurrencies are likely here to stay. 

What happens when investors are the victims of fraud involving a cryptocurrency? A recent U.S. District Court decision has shed a great deal of light on the issue. 

Insider Trading: Beyond The Headlines

Years after Martha Stewart's trial was national news, insider trading was thrust back into the headlines last week as a New York Congressman was indicted for allegedly placing a call from the White House lawn to deliver a stock tip to a family member. 

Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY) was initially defiant in the face of the charges but, by Saturday, had decided to suspend his reelection bid

Secondary Liability: Is "Just Doing My Job" a Valid Defense?

The U.S. Supreme Court recently agreed to hear an appeal stemming from an investment banker who was found liable for fraud. There are numerous cases each year, but this case stands out due to its peculiar circumstances. The banker was found liable due to the practice of copying and pasting his boss's fraudulent emails into client-facing messages (Source: Law360, June 20, 2018). 

What Does SCOTUS Ruling on SEC Appointments Mean For You?

Late last month the Supreme Court of the United States issued a highly anticipated ruling in a case that could have lasting ramifications for investors and financial institutions. In the case of Lucia v. SEC, the court ruled that the Securities and Exchange Commission's (SEC) appointments of Administrative Law Judges were unconstitutional. 

If You See Something, Say Something

The saying "if you see something, say something" has its origins in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks. Korey Kay & Partners', the Manhattan ad agency responsible for the slogan, had the MTA in mind but could have just as easily been describing the important role that whistleblowers play in the workplace and throughout society. 

As corporations and government bureaucracies become more complex than ever before, the accounts of whistleblowers on the inside are more important than ever in holding individuals, government agencies, and business entities accountable. 

A Startling Development in the Cryptocurrency Market

In a previous post (Getting Started With Cryptocurrency: 4 Things To Know), we discussed the importance of familiarizing yourself with the regulatory issues and uncertainty surrounding cryptocurrency prior to adding it to your investment portfolio or including it in offerings to your clients. 

A development in the bitcoin market this week brings the issues of regulatory uncertainty back to the forefront. 

What Your Business Can Learn From Facebook's Rough 2018

Consumers no longer treat e-commerce as an occasional alternative to brick-and-motor retail; in 2018 consumers expect the option to handle purchases, returns, and even customer service interaction online, often on-the-go via mobile applications. More importantly, they also expect that businesses will be faithful stewards of their personal data and fierce protectors of their privacy. 

For evidence of this expectation, look no further than the recent controversy over Facebook's handling of user data.  

Examining The DOJ's New Approach To White Collar Crime

White collar criminal charges such as insider trading and securities fraud can involve millions - even billions - of dollars and result in significant prison time upon conviction. A change in how the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) approaches these matters is of great-significance due to their potential reach. 

As reported by Reuters ("U.S. Justice Dept to lessen overlap on white-collar crime, change penalties: Rosenstein"), the DOJ has recently launched efforts to work with other jurisdictions to reduce overlap and ensure that penalties are not disproportionate. 

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