Martha Stewart Essay

1560 words - 6 pages

Martha Stewart, founder and CEO of her own multimillion dollar corporation, Martha Stewart Living Omni media was indicted, on charges of lying to investigators, securities manipulation, and obstruction of justice. She was sentenced to five months in a West Virginia state woman’s prison and 5 months on house arrest. Originally it was said that Ms. Stewart was indicted on charges of insider trading, however obviously those charges could not be proven. After a year and a half investigation, she was indicted on totally different charges. Ms. Stewart’s stock broker at the time Mr. Bacanovic, who was employed at Merrill Lynch Investment Company, was also indicted on the same charges. Mr. Bacanovic had his assistant call and give Ms. Stewart non-public information about one of his companies other clients and how the stock in this particular company, Imclone biotech would be dropping the next day. After receiving this information Ms. Stewart authorized her stock broker to sell her stocks in Imclone biotech. She had almost 4,000
shares of stock in the biotech company. This company was said to be on the verge of marketing a new drug that would have a big break in cancer treatment. However it was found out that the Food and Drug Administration would not be approving this particular drug. With this new drug being the companies leading product to lure investors, the President of Imclone knew that the stocks would drop once the announcement was made public. Around the end of December 2001, Imclone’s CEO Sam Waksal, also a client of Merrill Lynch started illegally transferring his stock to his daughter. The intent was to have the daughter start selling off the stock before the FDA made its announcement about not supporting the drug. That’s when Ms. Stewart’s stock broker had his assistant notify her of the upcoming situation and she decided to sell her stocks before she lost too much money. That is said to be insider trading, having received any type of information that was not made available to the public. I don’t understand why the stock broker, who worked for her and got a commission for what he does. His job was to ensure that her portfolio stayed profitably healthy and looking good. But the Securities and Exchange Commission had a different view about the situation and started an investigation of these particular activities. I don’t know if Ms. Stewart really thought she was doing anything wrong at the time but her values seemed to be that of what ever can protect her and her money by any means necessary that’s what she would do. It would seem money was in her top three of things she valued. However I don’t know how many people who found out that the President of a company that they owned stock in was selling his stock and not try to sell theirs also, regardless of how they found out. The President of Imclone had his daughter start selling off stock, and that raised a red flag. As the investigation proceeded it was inevitable that...

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