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The Morning Brief: Prosecutors Have Their Say on SAC Conviction

Prosecutors are recommending that former SAC Capital Advisors portfolio manager Michael Steinberg, who was convicted of insider trading in December, should be sentenced to somewhere between 63 months and 78 months in prison. In a sentencing memo filed at the end of the day Friday, Assistant U.S. Attorney Antonia App also recommended that Steinberg and his research analyst, Jon Horvath, forfeit $365,142 in salary that was linked to the profits SAC made from their use of improper financial tips. According to the report, Steinberg’s lawyers are arguing his prison sentence shouldn’t exceed two years.




Allergan rejected the unsolicited takeover bid from activist hedge fund Pershing Square Capital Management and Valeant Pharmaceuticals. David E.I. Pyott, Allergan’s chairman and CEO, said in a press release that the proposal “substantially undervalues” Allergan and does not reflect the value of the company’s market positions, sales and marketing foundation, industry-leading research and development efforts, as well as future revenue and earnings growth. “The Board has determined that Valeant’s proposal creates significant risks and uncertainties for Allergan’s stockholders and believes that the Valeant business model is not sustainable,” he adds. Later in the day, Pershing Square fired off a letter to Matthew J. Maletta, Vice President, Associate General Counsel and Secretary of Allergan, seeking all stockholder materials as of the most recent date available, and gave him five days to produce this information. The hedge fund said the “purpose of this demand” is to enable Pershing Square to communicate with fellow shareholders. Presumably Pershing Square would need this information if it chooses to initiate a consent solicitation to call a special meeting or launch a proxy fight to get its nominees on Allergan’s board of directors.




Kenneth Griffin’s Citadel Advisors filed amended versions of its 13F report for both the third quarter of 2013 and fourth quarter of 2014 to reflect its holding of CapitalSource, a division of Pacific Western Bank that makes commercial loans to small and middle-market businesses. In the filings, Citadel reported a 1.3 million share stake in the company as of September 30, 2013 and just 400,000 shares at year-end. When Citadel initially filed its 13F filing for December 31, 2013, it reported owning just 18,428 shares of the company as well as a small amount of call options on the stock.




Daniel Benton’s tech-focused Andor Capital disclosed in a new 13F filing that it managed nearly $1.9 billion in U.S. stocks as of the end of the first quarter. By far the fund’s three largest holdings—accounting for nearly 37 percent of assets—are Tesla Motors, Google Class A and Twitter. TripAdvisor was its largest new position while the 3-D printing company Stratasys was its biggest liquidated holding.




UBS raised its price target on The Priceline Group to $1500 from $1480 and maintained its Buy rating on the stock.

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