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Will there be an insider trading investigation following Gordhan removal?

By Jessica Anne Wood

According to David Maynier, Democratic Alliance (DA) shadow minister of Finance, the Financial Services Board (FSB) confirmed that it will investigate possible ‘insider trading’ linked to the dismissal of former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

Maynier wrote to the FSB on 31 March requesting the FSB investigate possible insider trading linked to the removal of Gordhan as Finance Minister.

However, it does not appear that the investigation is as yet confirmed. Solly Keetse, head of department for the directorate of market abuse at the FSB, told Justmoney: “We have received a complaint from the DA but have not yet commenced an investigation as we are still awaiting a report on the subject matter from the JSE Market Regulation department who are responsible for market surveillance on the JSE.

“Upon receipt of the JSE report we will study it to establish whether there is indeed a case to be investigated. If so we will register an investigation and compile a report for the directorate of market abuse which can either refer the case to the enforcement committee (EC) of the FSB with a penalty recommendation or close the case if there is no or insufficient evidence to prove the allegations. The FSB will issue a press release once a decision has been made thereon.”

Gordhan was replaced in a large cabinet reshuffle two weeks ago, which also saw the removal of other top government ministers, including former Minister of Energy Tina Joemat-Pettersson.

“There is widespread concern there may have been insider trading and there is some circumstantial evidence to suggest there was insider trading, which may have materially benefited someone with prior knowledge of the former finance minister’s firing,” said Maynier.

Maynier was contacted for clarification over the statement that the FSB had not confirmed the investigation. A response had not been provided at the time of publication.

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