SEC Promises To Make Hedge Fund Managers Swear

Sep 22 2008 | 2:42am ET

The Securities and Exchange Commission is turning up the heat in its rumor-mongering probe with plans to require hedge funds to describe their trades under oath.

The agency said certain unidentified hedge funds, brokerages and institutional investors will be forced to disclose their positions, as well as provide “certain other information,” in sworn statements. Meanwhile, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority will conduct a parallel investigation into short-selling, which will include on-site visits to the firms in question.

“Abusive short-selling, market manipulation and false rumor mongering for profit by any entity cuts to the heart of investor confidence in our markets,” Linda Thomsen, director of enforcement at the SEC, said. “We will root it out, expose it and subject the guilty parties to the full force of the law.”

The announcement comes on the heels of a series of emergency measures to curb short-selling taken by the SEC last week. Among those provisions are an outright, if temporary, ban on shorting 799 financial stocks.

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