Goldman-linked insider trading trial starts this week
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STEVE CHIOTAKIS: Jury selection gets underway tomorrow in the insider trading trial of Raj Rajaratnam. The founder of hedge fund giant Galleon Group faces up to 25 years in prison. More than two dozen other traders are charged as well. Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein could to testify at the trial.
Fortune Magazine’s Allan Sloan is with us now to talk to us about the broader implications of all this. Good morning Allan.
ALLAN SLOAN: Good morning Steve.
CHIOTAKIS: What are these cases really about?
SLOAN: What they’re about is a group of hedge funds made a lot of money buy getting information they shouldn’t have gotten. And the people who were involved in all aspects of this are being charged with a variety of things, such as insider trading and cheating.
CHIOTAKIS: You know a lot of this Allan has been going on a long time, but these specific cases were part of what happened during the financial crisis. And yet there were certainly bigger players doing stuff that — while not insider trading — led to the financial crisis. Why haven’t we seen charges against them, these bigger players on Wall Street?
SLOAN: Because to bring charges against the big boys, you need to have a criminal offense. And stupidity, greed, double dealing — there’s been plenty of that, but no one has managed to show that there’s a criminal offense. Now I can see why this makes people angry and it annoys me, it’s really shocking but this had nothing to do with the financial crisis — absolutely nothing.
CHIOTAKIS: Let me ask you this: Will Wall Street reform take care of any of this stuff?
CHIOTAKIS: I’m going to take that as a no.
SLOAN: Yeah, well, the things all these people are accused of doing have been against the law for years, and Wall Street reform isn’t going to stop it, but it’s pleasant for some people to think so.
CHIOTAKIS: Fortune magazine’s Allan Sloan with us from New York. Allan, thanks.
SLOAN: You’re welcome Steve.
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