Editor for The Biotech Forum (www.biotechforumsa.com), the #2 subscribed to Marketplace investment service offered through SeekingAlpha. Top 5% ranked analyst (TipRanks) 2013 through first half of 2015. Daily contributor for Real Money Pro. Hedge fund manager from 2008 to 2011. Previously technology executive at Fortune 100 firm for a decade. For Free weekly investment reports on small, attractive biotech stocks just register at www.bretjenseninvests.com
Bill Gunderson @billgunderson is the CEO and Chief Market Strategist of Gunderson Capital Managment in San Diego, CA.
He is also a professional money manager, former research analyst, author of Best Stocks Now, and developer of the Best Stocks Now smartphone app.
He offers four free weeks to his weekly Best Stocks Now to Seeking Alpha readers at gundersoncapital.com
He also hosts a daily stock market radio show that is syndicated nationwide on the Salem Broadcast Network.
Bill has appeared on the Fox Business Channel and on Bloomberg Radio numerous times .His articles have been published in Barron's, Forbes, TheStreet.com and numerous other publications.
He can be reached at email@example.com or by calling (855)611-BEST.
Kevin John Bradford Wilbur is the President and Founder of ProtectVEST and AdvanceVEST By EchoVectorVEST. He is also the Chief Architect of the Motion Dynamics and Precision Pivots Forecast Model and Alert Paradigm, and the Senior Developer of the ProtectVEST and AdvanceVEST Active Advanced Risk Management Trade Technology and Active Advanced Position Management Value Optimization Methodology.
Kevin is a prize-winning Economist (Governor's Fellow) and Financial Physicist with an over 35 year span of experience and awards in Academics, Research, Management, Practice and Trade. Kevin has specialized experience in the Major Market Indexes, Commodities, ETFs, and in derivatives and the derivatives markets.
Kevin received his Masters Degree in Economics from George Mason University, where he also served as the President of the Theta Chapter of Omicron Delta Epsilon, The International Economic Honorary. At GMU, Kevin was awarded The Virginia Graduate Scholarship, and also served prestigiously as a Governor's Fellow in Economics.
Kevin also attended The USDA Graduate School, where also excelling, he focused on Commodity Price and Program Management Techniques in service to US National Interests. With economic security clearances at USDA, Kevin served within the Agricultural Policy Analysis Group at ERS (Economic Research Service) and within Program Administration Divisions at ASCS (Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service). He also served to support CCC (Commodity Credit Corporation) economic forecasts, CCC commodity price discovery and stabilization efforts, and CCC contract awards. While at USDA, Kevin was awarded the Federal Certificate of Merit Service Award for his contributions and service to the National Interest at a time of peak need.
Kevin has served as Founder, President, Senior Market Analyst and Senior Market Strategist of ProtectVEST And AdvanceVEST By EchoVectorVEST, Divisions of Motion Dynamics and Precision Pivots, Bradford Market Research and Analytics, KBW Enterprises.*
In forecasting and anticipating the market crash of 2008 and 2009 beforehand in 2007, Kevin enabled prepared parties the prevention of significant equity value loss those years. And his subsequent market forecast of the following March 2009 major market lows proved equally as 'valuable.' (Kevin forecasted and identified the March 10, 2009, 're-entry point' to the day).
In 2010 Kevin went on to successfully forecast and identify the subsequent intermediate-term market top of mid-April enabling high market price level insurance locks. He also forecasted and identified the early September re-entry point later that year, for the re-introduction of powerfully productive full net long and double-long market exposures.
In 2011 Kevin's market forecasts continued with truly remarkable and outstanding results, and his market-timed Alerts guided to an amazing 130 percent annual increase on a Dow 30 Industrials Composite Average Price Equivalency Basis that year!
In 2012 Kevin's market forecasts were even more impressive, with the MDPP Model forecasting over triple the effective returns of 2011! Kevin made and issued pivotal forecasts for the Major Market Large Cap Stock Indexes, the Gold Metals Markets, and the North American Crude Oil Markets (his three select and primary foci) with further outstanding results and success. Interest in Kevin's forecasts have been growing significantly these past years.
And in 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016 Kevin continued to further the outstanding pace and reach of his valuable and lauded commentary and analysis and his remarkable record of timely and effective market forecasts and alerts now issued globally for the benefit and interests of market scholars, market professionals, and active market enthusiasts alike.
See http://www.echovectorvest.com/services.html OUR RECORD: "Forecasting Prowess And Trade Management Technology Consistent With More Than Doubling The Portfolio Position Value Of The DIA ETF (Dow 30 Industrials) From Mid-2007 to 2009 (Including The 2008-2009 Recessionary Period)! More Than Doubling Again From Early 2009 Through 2010! And More Than Doubling Again In 2011! And More Than Tripling Again In 2012! And Then More Than Tripling Again In 2013! And Then More Than Tripling Again In 2014! And Then More Than Tripling Again In 2015 and 2016!"
FURTHER BIO Kevin attended the College of William and Mary as an undergraduate, earning his Double-Major. As a Senior, he was selected by William and Mary (along with one other undergraduate) to enjoy the privilege of attending class his last semester additionally at the Marshall-Wythe School of Law. Kevin grew up and attended High School in Fairfax County, VA. His formative High School achievements and interests also included a plethora of honor societies, clubs, organizations, and awards. At Commencement Kevin was awarded three (for the first time in the history of his high school) different Senior Graduating Day Highest Honor Awards and Plaques: in Service, in Citizenship, and in Social Studies. Kevin was also a Key Club President, a Letterman and District Medal Event Winner in Track and Field, and also earned the Eagle Scout Award. Kevin remains a member of NESA (The National Eagle Scout Association) to this day.
Kevin is married, and currently lives with his beloved wife and their three children in sunny Florida, USA.
*With ProtectVEST by EchoVectorVEST, Kevin has led the design and engineering of an applied methodology seeking to enhance major market exposed portfolio value security and overall portfolio value performance and return through the application and utilization of specialized derivatives as 'portfolio value insurancing' hedges when also combined with the power of the Motion Dynamics and Precision Pivots Forecast Model and Alert Paradigm and the ProtectVEST and AdvanceVEST By EchoVectorVEST Active Advanced Risk Management Trade Technology and Active Advanced Management Position Value Optimization Method.
AMERICAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION MEMBER
OMICRON DELTA EPSILON, THE INTERNATIONAL ECONOMICS HONOR SOCIETY, PAST PRESIDENT THETA CHAPTER
MARKET TECHNICIANS ASSOCIATION AFFILIATE MEMBERSHIP
AUTHOR/CONTRIBUTOR OF ARTICLES PUBLISHED AND FEATURED IN NASDAQ.COM "Official Site Of The Nasdaq Stock Market" CNBC ONLINE "First In Business Worldwide" MARKETWATCH "Stock Market Quotes, Business News, Financial News" MSN MONEY "Investing" YAHOO FINANCE "Business Finance, Stock Market, Quotes, News" SEEKING ALPHA "Stock Market News and Financial News" BULLFAX "Market News and Analysis" STREETINSIDER "If You're Not Inside You're Outside" BIZWAYS "Investment Opportunities And Industry News" FINANCIAL VISUALIZATIONS "Financial Research, Analysis, and Visualization" FINANCE ROUNDTABLE "Market Forecasts and Finance", UNC Chapel Hill ECHOVECTORVEST "Advanced Educational Stock Market Analysis, Forecast, and Alert Website, and Technical Analysis Methodology." YAHOO FINANCE CANADA "Business News, Real Time Stock Quotes, Investing Tools" NEWS NOW UK "Industry, Sector, Commodity, Precious Metal News" THE ECONOMIC TIMES "Business News, Personal Finance, Financial News" FINANCE PONG "Global Financial And Market News" SEEKING ALPHA JAPAN "Overseas Asia" ROYAL METALS GROUP "The Trusted Name In Precious Metals" SHARPS PIXLEY NEWS "Bullion Brokers London Since 1778" A-MARK PRECIOUS METALS "Gold, Silver, Platinum - Charts and Graphs" STERLING INVESTMENT SERVICES "Buy Side Research" GOLD NEWS TODAY "Current Gold Prices And Precious Metals News" GOLD TREND "Intelligent Gold Investing" GOLD PRICE TODAY "Gold News" GOLD RATE 24 "Gold News" INDONESIAN COMPANY "Commodity News" REGATOR "Only The Best Blogs" NEWSBLOGGED "Latest News, Videos, and Live Videos" YAHOO VOICES "General Yahoo Contributors' Network" and many more.
FOR MORE EXTENSIVE PROFILE INFORMATION, AGAIN SEE: http://advancevest.com/kevinjohnbradfordwilbur.html
THE FOLLOWING LINKS TAKE YOU DIRECTLY TO THE PROTECTVEST AND ADVANCEVEST BY ECHOVECTORVEST MDPP PRECISION PIVOTS WEB SITE HOMEPAGE
advancevest.com protectvest.com motiondynamicsandprecisionpivots.com precisionpivots.info echovector.com echovectorpivotpoints.com echovectorvest.com market-pivot.com etfpivots.com optionpivots.com eminipivots.com stock-pivots.com dowpivots.com spypivots.com qqqpivots.com bondpivots.com commoditypivots.com goldpivots.com silverpivots.com oilpivots.com dollarpivots.com currencypivots.com emergingmarketpivots.com _______________________________________________________
Current Newsletters: For current applications of EchoVector Analysis see the following fifteen Market Alpha Newsletters Group Newsletters (free online combined version):
1. "The EchoVector Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at marketinvestornews.com and market-pivots.com "The Market Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
2. "The ETF Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at etftraderweekly.com and etfinvestorweekly.com and etfpivots.com "The ETF Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
3. "The Dow Composite (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at dowpivots.blogspot.com and dowpivots.com "The Dow Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
4. "The S&P 500 Composite (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at spypivots.blogspot.com and spypivots.com "The S&P Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
5. "The Nasdaq 100 Composite (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at marketinvestornews.com and qqqpivots.com and market-pivots.com "The Nasdaq Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
6. "The Gold Metals Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at goldinvestorweekly.com and goldpivots.com "The Gold Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
7. "The Silver Metals Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at silverinvestorweekly.com and silverpivots.com "The Silver Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
8. "The Bond Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at bondpivots.blogspot.com and bondpivots.com "The Bond Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
9. "The Oil Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at oilpivots.blogspot.com and oilpivots.com "The Oil Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
10. "The Dollar (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at dollarpivots.blogspot.com and dollarpivots.com "The Dollar Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
11. "The Commodity Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at commoditypivots.blogspot.com and commoditypivots.com "The Commodity Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
12. "The Currency Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at currencypivots.blogspot.com and currencypivots.com "The Currency Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
13. "The Emerging Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at emergingmarket.blogspot.com and emergingmarketpivots.com "The Emerging Market Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
14. "The Emini Futures Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at eminipivots.com and marketinvestornews.com and market-pivots.com "The E-mini Futures Pivots Forecaster"
15. The Options Market (Price Pivots) Forecaster And Active Advanced Position And Risk Management Newsletter" By The Market Alpha Newsletters Group and By BrightHouse Publishing. Free Online at optionpivots.blogspot.com and optionpivots.com "The Option Pivots Forecaster" Kevin John Bradford Wilbur, Editor
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Work presented may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are not historical facts but instead represent only the author's belief regarding future events, many of which, by their nature, are inherently uncertain and outside his control. Except for the author's obligation to disclose material information, the author is not under any obligation (and expressly disclaims any obligation) to update or alter any projections, goals, assumptions, or other statements, whether written or oral, that may be made from time to time, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
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Prescient Investment Analysis is a person. BA, Boston College, Philosophy.
With hedge fund manager, CNBC regular and long-time veteran of the Russian markets Tim Seymour at the helm, Emerging Money (http://www.emergingmoney.com) provides education, trading analysis and comprehensive views of emerging markets around the world. As economies in the BRIC group and beyond become the growth engines of global wealth creation, Emerging Money provides insights and tools for investors to trade successfully in these markets via individual ADRs, foreign-traded stocks, currencies and ETFs.
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Please read this section carefully for some important disclosures.
Who Am I?
My name is Larry Smith. My career was spent on Wall Street as a biotechnology and pharmaceuticals analyst and also as Director of Research at Smith Barney and Hambrecht and Quist. On my website, SmithOnStocks, which can be addressed from this Seeking Alpha site, I publish articles on biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. I attempt to be objective and present a balanced view of negatives and positives. Readers should not rely on Seeking Alpha for my latest views and articles on Seeking Alpha should be viewed as informational only. The reports section of my website reflects my most current view on a stock.
How Do I Get Paid?
My only source of revenues from my articles is from subscription revenues from my website. I do not receive any compensation from companies or investor relations firms to write articles. I do not receive any direct or indirect compensation from hedge funds, other investment managers or any entity to write articles. I consider direct compensation to be cash compensation that is directly or indirectly tied to my writing articles.
I also do not receive compensation in the form of content. I believe that it is not uncommon for some writers to receive content from hedge funds, other investment managers or any entity that are critical components of the articles that they write. I consider this as non-cash compensation. I do not receive advertising revenues from my website so there is no incentive to be sensational in order to create page hits. I only get paid if my subscribers believe that my articles are of value to them and they then decide to subscribe to my services.
You Should View Articles Published on Seeking Alpha as Informational Only
I want to make clear to readers that not all of the reports that I publish on my website are also published on Seeking Alpha. Also, I will sometimes make reports available on my website a significant period of time before publishing the same or a condensed version on Seeking Alpha. All of the articles that are published on Seeking Alpha and my website at the same time have consistent views and opinions. However, at a later data, it may be the case that my viewpoint and opinion may change and these changes in viewpoint and opinion may only be published in articles on my website.
For this reason, readers may want to check the reports section on my website for my current opinion on a stock and should not rely on the latest Seeking Alpha article as my viewpoint or opinion may have changed. The content on my website is intended only for subscribers, but non-subscribers can view the headlines in the reports section which in most cases but not all will announce a change in viewpoint or opinion. However, I emphasize that I undertake no obligation to update my articles on Seeking Alpha and the latest article on Seeking Alpha may not reflect my latest thinking. This is why I want to re-emphasize that any article published on Seeking Alpha should be viewed as information only.
What SmithOn Stocks is All About
SmithOnStocks is not registered as a securities broker-dealer or as an investment adviser with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission or with any state securities regulatory authority. SOS relies solely on publicly disclosed and available information. While SOS makes all reasonable efforts to confirm the accuracy of its statements and opinions, all comments should be considered only as opinion and should not be considered to be absolute fact. Investors should carefully read the Terms & Conditions and Disclosures sections of my website. Investors should carefully perform their own due diligence, seek other points of view and consult with their broker or financial advisor.
Investing in equities includes considerable risk, and investors should be prepared for the possibility of capital loss. This is particularly the case with biotechnology stocks in which hard to predict clinical and commercial outcomes can often disappoint investors and lead to unusually large declines in price. Potential investors in biotechnology stocks must often be prepared to risk the loss of substantially all of their investment. These stocks are only suitable for investors willing and able to accept unusually high financial risk. Users of my information acknowledge that SOS and its owner are not liable to any person or entity for the accuracy, thoroughness, reliability, or timeliness of the information provided. Users further acknowledge that SOS is also not responsible for any direct or indirect losses that may arise from the use of information provided to any person or entity.
Employees of SmithOnStocks or SOS do buy and sell healthcare stocks, some of which may be the subject of written articles appearing on Seeking Alpha. In the event that employees have a stock investment in a company, that ownership is fully disclosed in notes on Seeking Alpha. On any new recommendation, I have a 48 hour waiting period before initiating a position in a stock. I trade in line with my recommendations.
In 1999 I made an ethical breach that resulted in a suspension from being a registered representative in the securities industry for a period of time. I believe that this measure was harsh beyond any reasonable measure and totally unwarranted. I have gone to great lengths in this report to give my side of the story and I hope that you will read the in-depth account that I have provided. This took place over 16 years ago and has long since ended. There has been no restriction from the NYSE for many years on my working as a registered representative if I choose to go through the required registration procedures.
Still, this NYSE action is like a Scarlett letter that I carry. I would urge you to read the full account of the events that led to this NYSE action and if you do so I believe you will agree that this in no way reflects on my integrity and the way I have always conducted myself, then and now. I strongly believe that the action taken was excessive and I think that if you read my full account you will agree.
People make mistakes. Bill Clinton lied under oath, was impeached and disbarred as a lawyer in Arkansas in connection with the Monica Lewinsky affair. However, society has judged him on the body of work that he has done. Suspensions in the security industry can result from serious infractions in which investors are defrauded or swindled. In the events that led to my suspension no investors lost money and as I explain in this report investors who followed my advice made significant amounts of money. Before you rush to any conclusions, let me tell you my story.
I Am Proud in How I Have Conducted My Career
Before I go into the details of this ethical breach, I want to emphasize that I have had a distinguished career on Wall Street. My record from 1971 when I started on Wall Street until 1999 was unblemished. I came to New York from Indiana with no business connections and no money but through hard work I became a highly regarded Wall Street analyst and was selected to the Institutional Investor All Star team in pharmaceuticals for ten years in a row. Based on my record as being the top or one of the top analysts at Smith Barney, I was selected to be head of research from 1981 until 1989. I also served on the Board of Directors at Smith Barney.
Based on my strong reputation, Hambrecht and Quist approached me in 1989 to head their life sciences research effort and to run the annual H&Q (now JP Morgan) healthcare conference. I was a Managing Director and on the operating committee at H&Q. I left H&Q in the late 1990s because I disliked the bureaucracy that was such an integral part of being head of research. I had made enough money to be financially secure and I wanted to get back into doing what I loved, biotechnology research. I joined Tucker Anthony in 1997 as a biotechnology analyst.
Explaining the Events That Led to the NYSE Issue
Tucker Anthony had a sister firm called Sutro and a decision was made early in 1998 to move health care research from Tucker to Sutro. Tucker was an east coast based firm and Sutro was based in Los Angeles. Sutro leased a New York office to which I moved. It was here that an unfortunate train of events was set in motion that led to the NYSE action that put a stain on what I consider an outstanding career.
When I moved from Tucker to Sutro, I maintained my brokerage accounts at Tucker. I conducted normal trading in this account for some months. Then the research administrative research manager for Sutro contacted me and said that for regulatory purposes I would have to move my account from Tucker to Sutro. After some time spent in looking for a broker to handle my account at Sutro I became frustrated. At that time, I had over $5 million in my brokerage accounts. While I was sophisticated in health care investing which made up 10% of my portfolio, I needed help with other parts of the portfolio. I could find no retail broker at Sutro that I wanted to trust my portfolio to. I asked and received approval to look for a broker outside of Sutro and contacted Schwab about finding an investment advisor there to manage my account.
While this was in process, the research administrative manager at Sutro called again and said that Sutro was probably planning to shut down the New York office and I would have to move to Los Angeles or leave the firm. Moving to Los Angeles was not an option for me as my roots were deep in New York. I informed her that given this choice I would soon be leaving Sutro rather then moving to Los Angeles and began to think about what to do. I came to the preliminary conclusion that I would start a consulting firm dealing in biotechnology. I also concluded that I would have to carefully manage my investment portfolio.
It was here that I made a major mistake that I have regretted ever since. Frustrated that my money was tied up in Tucker and I was unable to trade in my account and unable to find a broker that I trusted, I decided to open an account at Schwab without a broker managing it. I indicated on the account transfer form that I was self-employed based on the assumption that I was going to be leaving Sutro imminently. This was my Bill Clinton moment and turned out to be a major mistake.
I continued to work at Sutro while I was waiting for the New York office to be closed which I thought would be in a matter of days or weeks and during this time, I began to execute trades in my account at Schwab. However, after some weeks the research administrative manager at Sutro called and informed me that based on the response they had gotten from clients and the work that I was doing that the firm had reversed itself and now wanted to keep the office in New York and they were also willing to hire two assistants to aid me. There was also the promise of a significant bonus in the upcoming review that based on my work could amount to several hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Not surprisingly, I decided to stay on at Sutro instead of leaving and starting my own firm. I then looked for and finally found a Sutro broker that I could trust to help manage my portfolio. The brokerage accounts at Schwab were opened in February of 1999 and transferred to Sutro in April 1999. When I moved my accounts to Sutro the compliance department at Sutro saw that there was this hiatus when I had an unauthorized account at another firm. This was reported to NYSE.
NYSE Reviewed My Case and Took No Action for Three Years
Management at Sutro looked very closely at what had occurred and decided that while it was certainly not something they could condone, it was a minor infraction and they thought that given my stellar and unblemished record that NYSE would not take any meaningful action other than a wrist slap. Sutro decided to be pre-emptive in administering the wrist slap and fined me and suspended me for one month. They thought that this would satisfy NYSE based on their interpretation of what had occurred. They wanted me to continue with the firm, paid the sizable bonus I was due and committed to picki up all legal fees.
I then had a deposition with a lawyer from NYSE in early 2000. During a one day interview, he went over all of the details of the accounts that were held at Schwab and all of the trades that occurred in detail. He also looked at all of the reports that I had issued as an analyst during this time to compare to the trading in my account to the issuance of research reports. I then heard nothing more from the NYSE for three years.
Sutro concluded as did I that this issue was behind us. Three years later in mid-2003, I heard from NYSE to my shock that they were re-opening the case. Why after three years was the case being re-opened? In talking to the lawyers at NYSE, I came to understand that this was the result of Elliott Spitzer’s attack on Wall Street research. Remember the famous case of Henry Blodgett who recommended stocks of investment banking clients to clients that he thought were actually sales.
NYSE enforcement was under pressure because this unethical practice had been brought to light by Spitzer and they had missed it. They were under pressure to show how tough they could be as enforcers. They reviewed their records and came up with my case which they decided to reopen it in order to show that they were aggressive enforcers.
They went over the same information that had been gathered in early 2000, but came up with an entirely different interpretation. They said that I effected stock transactions shortly before issuance of research reports which I had prepared and this was a violation of Exchange Rule 472.40(2) (iii). They also said that I failed to disclose that I held securities in stocks recommended in a research report. They said that I opened accounts at a member firm that concealed fact of my employment at another member firm; violated Exchange Rule 407(b). They recommended a censure and two and one-half year suspension.
Two Stock Trades at Question
The information on opening an account at another firm is something that I just discussed at length. This was not in dispute. However, NYSE focused on two stock trades that I made and explained the suspension largely on the basis of these two trades. I believe that they were clearly wrong in their conclusions. Let me discuss those trades in detail.
The first trade was in Stericycle, a medical waste disposal company. I had been following the company for some time with a neutral rating. In my reports, I noted that the Company wanted to buy the medical waste disposal business of Waste Management and if they were successful, I would immediately go to a strong buy.
This acquisition was announced on April 14, 2009 after the close at 4 PM EST. Because it was 1 PM in Los Angeles I held a conference call with Sutro’s traders and the salesforce and told them I was going to a strong buy on the stock. It was the practice of Sutro to initiate new ideas with a conference call in this manner. The traders and sales force would then go out to the clients with the idea. After this, the analyst would follow-up by publishing a note on First Call (an electronic distribution network) and this was done on April 15 This was then followed up by a written research report on April 16. On April 16, I bought 2500 shares of the stock at a price of $12. This was accepted practice at Sutro for research analysts buying stocks that they recommended. There was no requirement to wait for a period of time to buy the stock. The analyst was allowed to buy the stock at the same time as other Sutro employees and clients
The NYSE judged my conduct on standards that were different from those that were accepted practices at Sutro. By today’s standards, the Sutro practices seem very loose but they were common at the time. This is why Sutro did not view this trade as a breach of conduct and kept me as an analyst. The NYSE also said that I did not disclose that I owned Stericycle in my written report. However, none of the analysts at Sutro were required at the time to do so. This was also standard operating procedure.
Stericycle was a major success for investors. Adjusting for stock splits the stock traded at about $3.00 when I first recommended it. Fifteen years later, the stock is trading at about $119. This was one of my best recommendations ever. I held the Stericycle stock for many years and only sold it recently.
The NYSE did not accept that my actions were in line with the practices of Sutro even though I produced a letter to that effect from the research administrative officer. I also argued that a $30,000 investment in a portfolio that amounted to $5 million at the time was de minimus. I argued that the stock was bought and maintained as a long term investment. I argued that it was an excellent money making idea for investors. The NYSE dismissed all of these arguments and maintained that I traded ahead of my recommendation.
The second trade that the NYSE emphasized was a trade in Schering Plough. On April 18, the stock had traded down by 5%. I had an accumulate rating on the stock essentially telling investors to buy the stock for the long term, but connoting less emphasis than a buy. In the morning call to traders and salesmen, I alerted them to the price weakness, but told them there was no change in the fundamental outlook and there was no change in my price target. I was not intending to issue a report, but the research administrative manager told me that the price drop in Schering Plough based on my price target indicated 25% upside that was the accepted criteria for a buy recommendation. Hence, I needed to put out a report in which I upgraded my opinion from accumulate to buy.
I bought the stock on April 20 at the same time as the written report was issued. I previously owned 500 shares and this increased my position to 1000 shares for a total investment of about $35,000 which again was within a $5 million portfolio. The NYSE again accused me of the same things as in the Stericycle situation. They said that I traded ahead of my recommendation and did not disclose that I owned the stock. My responses were the same as for Stericycle and were once again rejected.
Was The NYSE Action Justified?
I think that the NYSE action was out of all proportion to what actually transpired. I think the enforcement officers applied new standards in overturning the prior decision to take no action on this case that had been in effect for three years. They were under pressure to make a big splash in the Elliot Spitzer era to show how tough they were. My recommendations were solid recommendations and indeed the Stericycle recommendation was outstanding.
I fully recognize that my decision to open the brokerage account at Schwab prior to resigning from Sutro was an ethical breach on my part even if I was planning to resign from Sutro. When I decided to stay with Sutro, I transferred my accounts immediately. I strongly and absolutely maintain that my trading in Schering-Plough and Stericycle was in accordance with policies in place at Sutro at the time. By today’s standards these seem loose, but this was common industry practice at the time.
The NYSE review was conducted by a mediator and it was he that determined the punishment. He had spent his entire career as an enforcement officer for the NYSE. He was also friends with the NYSE lawyers on my case and sent out to lunch with them during the hearing. He was the judge, jury and executioner of my fate. As I look back, I question his objectivity and motives. In writing his opinion, he did not acknowledge documents from Sutro that showed that my stock trading disclosures were in-line with their internal procedures. I had no opportunity to review or correct his opinion in the opinion he wrote. In a country in which, guilt or innocence is established by one’s peers, mine was determined by a hanging judge with no experience in the securities business and an apparent pre-determined view on my actions.
The enormous advancement in the biological sciences that is taking place has begun to change the traditional way of practicing medicine. Far-reaching biological products are being approved and news about breakthroughs are occupying the media headlines. However, selecting the biotechnology firms for investment requires not only an understanding of the company's finances, but also deep knowledge of the company's potential and the potential and scientific validity of it's products and technologies.
Our Mission is evaluating biotechnology companies, their products, their technologies, scientists, managements, as well as their finances. Our goal is to impart our readers with the knowledge and insight so that they may have a heightened understanding and appreciation for the biotechnology industry.
The Prohost Letter has been in circulation since 1992. Our readers are comprised of venture capital, fund managers, investors, medical professionals and individuals with one common interest, biotechnology.
Prohost Letter is posted in the members areas on the www.prohostbiotech.com. around 40 times a year. Articles are posted several times a week for subscribers in TODAY'S HIGHLIGHTS section and in News & Comments sector for all website visitors
I'm a 66-year-old investor focused on dividends in a Retirement Income Portfolio.
I've been a member of BetterInvesting.org since 1982 (formerly the National Association of Investment Clubs). For many years as a volunteer I helped lead workshops to teach tools developed by NAIC to educate investors about how to do basic fundamental stock analysis. I continue to have a strong interest in investor education.
Better Investing's "four principles" have been very helpful to me:
1) invest regularly throughout your lifetime;
2) invest in growth companies;
3) reinvest earnings and profits;
4) diversify by industry and size.
Bill Bengen's "4% Rule" inspired my goal to design a retirement portfolio of individual dividend growth stocks as a way to tap only dividend income from the portfolio as long as possible rather than selling assets.
Some things I've gleaned from mentors and colleagues:
- Peter Lynch's conviction that the average person, with some study and discipline, can make good decisions about stocks;
- Louis Rukeyser's ability to ask probing questions about the market;
- From The Intelligent Investor, Benjamin Graham's focus on value;
- From Better Investing columns, Charles Allmon's skill in finding growth stocks that also had the virtues of value and income;
- Brad Thomas' analysis real estate investment trusts;
- Bob Wells' disciplined search for dividend growth;
- From The Single Best Investment, Lowell Miller's focus on quality and safety;
- David Van Knapp's ability to keep the big picture in mind when designing a portfolio;
- David Fish's dedication to monitor consistent dividend growth;
- Factoids' distillation and dissemination of mounds of data;
- Chowder's determination to buy and hold quality businesses;
- BDC Buzz's clarity about the risks business development companies;
- Tom Konrad's commitment to alternative energy investments;
- George Fisher's insights about utility opportunities;
- The Seeking Alpha community--both veterans and young contributors.
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Jason Cimpl is a Research Analyst at Wyatt Investment Research who focuses on stock analysis and active trading. His financial career also includes auditing and mutual fund research.
Jason started at Wyatt Investment Research in 2007 and has been the lead researcher for several of their newsletters. His most popular service was TradeMaster, a swing trading service that ran from 2008 to April 2012. Under Jason’s guidance, readers of TradeMaster participated in astounding yearly gains during the newsletter’s lifetime - such as 44.5% in 2010 and 63.2% in 2011.
Today, he invests his personal time studying aggressive swing trading strategy and remains the lead equity analyst of Top Stock Insights - a post he's held since its inception - and a daily contributor to The Daily Profit.
Craig Van Pelt is a full-time trader specializing in one day, overnight trades of stocks, equity options, index options and ETF's. All trades are opened at the close or in the "After Hours Session," and they're closed-out in the first hour of trading the following day. His trading strategy is based upon his proprietary software program that he developed over some 20 years. The program uses the OEX and its current month OEX Options as the exclusive data input, and predicts the next days "opening" of the market with 80%+ accuracy. Craig is a former stock broker, Registered Investment Advisor & Money Manager. Born in New Jersey, he lived abroad for many years in the Caribbean, Europe and Russia. Craig is 65 years old and now resides in Florida. Villanova University 1965-1969 Honor Student, School of Commerce & Finance.