Ex-Oppenheimer P.E. Manager Barred

Jan 23 2014 | 12:43pm ET

The Securities and Exchange Commission has barred a former fund of private equity funds manager for allegedly inflating the value of his fund's holdings.

Brian Williamson routinely misled investors, potential investors and consultants about his Oppenheimer Holdings' fund's performance, marking up the valuations of its underlying funds, the SEC said. Williamson, who left Oppenheimer in 2011, has denied the allegations.

According to the SEC, Williamson began inflating valuations in September 2009. In one case, according to the regulator, Williamson marked up the value of his largest investment by 50%, turning the $6 million valuation given him by Cartesian Investors into $9 million, thereby increasing the fund's quarterly return from 4% to 38%.

"Investors rely on truthful and complete disclosures about valuation methodologies, and fund fees and expenses, especially when committing to long-term private-equity investment," Julie Riewe, who heads the SEC enforcement division's asset management unit, said.

Williamson's lawyer said his client "is proud of the track record of the investments that were made on his client's behalf."

In addition to the industry ban, the SEC levied a $100,000 fine against Williamson.

Oppenheimer paid $2.8 million last year to settle charges stemming from Williamson's alleged actions.


In Depth

Bob Doll's Ten Market Predictions For 2016

Jan 7 2016 | 9:37pm ET

Well-known market strategist Robert Doll has published his annual list of ten predictions...

Lifestyle

Citadel's Ken Griffin Donates $40M To New York's Museum of Modern Art

Dec 22 2015 | 9:23pm ET

Citadel founder Ken Griffin has donated $40 million to New York’s Museum of Modern...

Guest Contributor

Hedge Fund Marketing - Making the Most of Your Salesperson

Jan 20 2016 | 8:11pm ET

In this contributed article, Bruce Frumerman of Frumerman & Nemeth takes a close...