SAC Capital probe expands


It's safe to assume that investigators have mined what data they have on trades conducted by SAC Capital.

Finra has forwarded a lot of trading data on to criminal and civil investigators no doubt. In cases where the controversial firm has apparently hit a home run, suspicions will intensify. Media reports hold that the fund's trading in Weight Watchers shares and InterMune shares are now under investigation.

"Regulatory filings show that Cohen's $14 billion fund briefly held 2.1 million shares in Weight Watchers during the period under scrutiny by authorities - at which time the diet company's stock price roughly doubled. The inquiry is in its early stages and it is not clear whether anything improper was done either by SAC Capital or Cohen himself," according to Reuters.

In addition, "SAC bought 1.9 million shares of InterMune in the first quarter of 2010, after holding none in the prior two quarters, and held 10,983 shares at the end of the second quarter of 2010," according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

"InterMune's stock soared in the first week of March after the drugmaker's experimental medicine for a deadly lung disease was reviewed more favorably by U.S. regulators than analysts had expected. Two months later, the stock slumped after the company's application for a potential $1 billion-a-year lung treatment was rejected by regulators."

Moving from investigation to actual charges in either case will likely depend on a witness willing to work with the government. That has proven to be a bridge too far for the government so far.

For more:
- here's the Bloomberg article
- here's the Reuters article

Related articles:
SAC Capital remains elusive target for Feds
Cohen might be hit with civil charges