SEC charges Goldman Sachs vice president with insider trading

SEC charges Goldman Sachs vice president with insider trading
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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Thursday charged a Goldman Sachs vice president with insider trading.

Woojae “Steve” Jung, a San Francisco-based Goldman executive, allegedly made $140,000 in trades on companies that the bank was advising, according to the SEC complaint.

The agency’s complaint only referred to a “prominent investment bank,” but a listing in the industry database of brokers and a LinkedIn account with Jung’s name identified him as a Goldman Sachs vice president for investment banking.

“Jung tried to insulate himself by allegedly placing trades in the brokerage account of a friend who lived overseas,” said Joseph G. Sansone, chief of the SEC’s market abuse unit.

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“Like others before him, Jung’s alleged scheme failed when our data analysis uncovered the account’s suspicious trading pattern and, despite Jung’s attempts at evasion, traced the trading back to him.”   

Jung allegedly used the brokerage account of a friend in South Korea to conduct trades using insider information between 2015-2017.

The SEC alleges that Jung traded on at least 12 companies working with Goldman Sachs on transactions in advance of the announcements of those deals. Those firms included WebMD, Qualcomm, SanDisk and other companies that Goldman had advised on sales and other transactions.

Jung allegedly used a brokerage account maintained by Sungrok Hwang, a college friend from South Korea, to conduct the trades in an attempt to hide them from federal regulators. The SEC complaint seeks a court order for Hwang to surrender the contents of that account to the federal government.