Skip to comments.SEC steps up probe of BofA[Bank of America]
Posted on 03/10/2008 1:52:19 PM PDT by BGHater
Firms under scrutiny regarding certain bidding practices
Antitrust and securities regulators are considering charges against a handful of large banks, bond insurers and some of their employees as part of an investigation into certain municipal-bond investments.
Bank of America, UBS AG and bond insurer Financial Security Assurance Holdings Ltd. last month received notices from the Securities and Exchange Commission indicating civil enforcement action may be taken against them for potentially violating federal securities laws about bidding practices on contracts that manage municipal funds.
The "Wells notices" sent by the SEC, which the companies disclosed in regulatory filings, also give the companies an opportunity to argue why enforcement actions should not be brought.
The Justice Department and IRS also are participating in the probe. The Justice Department in November informed Wachovia Corp. that two if its Charlotte-based employees, both of whom are on leave, are targets of the investigation.
The bank is continuing to cooperate, according to Feb. 28 filing to the SEC.
A Justice spokesman on Wednesday said the investigation is ongoing and declined further comment. Spokesmen from the SEC and IRS declined to comment.
In November 2006, the Justice Department and SEC issued subpoenas to a number of Wall Street firms seeking information about a variety of municipal bond industry practices. Tax-exempt municipal bonds are sold to fund state and local projects, including sewer systems, bridges and stadiums.
Bank of America Corp. last year entered into a "leniency agreement" with the Justice Department, which prevents the government from bringing any criminal antitrust charges against it in return for continuing cooperation.
Bank of America's most recent disclosure, dated Feb. 28, said the federal agencies "are investigating possible anti-competitive bidding practices in the municipal derivatives industry ...from the early 1990s to date," and that it is continuing to cooperate.
The Wall Street Journal, citing people familiar with the matter, reported that Justice's antitrust division had sent letters to nearly 30 individuals indicating it will seek an indictment or file criminal charges against them as part of its investigation.
Shares of Bank of America fell 59 cents to $37.55, while Wachovia lost 75 cents to $28.73.
Why don’t I feel sorry fo BoA?
Not only that the FBI/SEC/et al announced today that it will be looking at Countrywide (BofAs acquisition of which is currently pending) regarding irregularities in financial disclosures.
What sweet bed fellows!
Because they're a bunch of pro-illegal, anti-Second Amendment jackwitted liberals?
I hope they go back to December, 2000 and look into their $500,000 quid pro quo donation to Bill Clinton’s foundation to get Rick Hendrick his pardon.
They are the reason I am getting laid off soon so investigate away!
Their flag based logo is also a violation of the flag codes.
Couldn’t happen to a nicer company. I was happy to close my accounts with them last year. I’m a credit union guy now.
I donate a couple hundred dollars/month to that company by way of credit card debt.