Dirty Tricks Unit

Revelations that at least one hedge fund had a dirty tricks unit. The aim being to discover (often through illegal means) information about share prices that might drop, thus a) allowing short positions to be created and b) spreading that information so that the prices would drop.

The latter part doesn\’t look to be illegal, at least not as I understand it. It\’s the creation of a false market that is, and revealing the truth isn\’t that. The methods of uncovering said truth might have been illegal though.

What really rather amused though was that bankers and hedgies really couldn\’t be expected to do such grubby things themselves:

It was set up by former senior executives from a blue-chip investment firm. However, from 2005, the "dirty-tricks unit" was staffed by former corporate investigators and investigative journalists hired from newspapers.

Such a moral profession, journalism.


3 thoughts on “Dirty Tricks Unit”

  1. No doubt the fact that a hedge fund (probably more than one) has been braking the law, will lead to calls for new laws.

    F**kfits the lot of them.

  2. “Such a moral profession, jounralism”
    (Looks like someone needs the aid of a Telegraph sub-ed ;¬ P )

    Way back in the mists of time there was a financial journalist who wrote a column for an investment magazine. Often he would write an article extolling the virtues of a share. He was also pally with a stockbroker. If one had access to the dealing sheets of the firm said stockbroker worked for one could discern interesting trading patterns. The curious regularity which said journalist’s brother-in-law and other names were buying shares in companies that coincidentally were then tipped in the mag & unloading them after publication.
    Back in those days, the area around the City had much more diverse industry. Amongst the enterprises was printing & by another coincidence the magazine was printed not a mile from the Stock Exchange.
    Print workers are notorious drinkers, as are stockbrokers, so it would be no coincidence to find both in the same pub. Now if a compositor could be persuaded to purloin…….I’ll leave the rest to your imagination.

    Tim adds: topy…ahem, yes.

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