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SEC sues former J.Crew executive for insider trading

WASHINGTON, Oct 25 (Reuters) - Securities regulators on Thursday charged a former director of store operations for clothing retailer J.Crew Group Inc with trading on non-public information ahead of the company's earnings announcements in 2009.

The Securities and Exchange Commission accused Frank LoBue of using information about the company's sales and expenses to purchase 2,300 shares of J.Crew common stock ahead of the company's May 2009 earnings release, which announced better-than-expected results.

LoBue again used sales and expense information to purchase 11,680 shares ahead of J.Crew's August 2009 earnings announcement, the SEC said.

Through the trades, LoBue received around $60,000 in illicit profits, the SEC said. The agency said it is seeking forfeiture of the illegal profits and a civil penalty against LoBue.

LoBue is 43 and lives in Hoboken, New Jersey, according to the complaint. He could not be immediately reached for comment. A J.Crew spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The SEC said LoBue's employment at J.Crew was terminated in February 2010.

J.Crew became a private company last year after shareholders approved a $2.86 billion takeover deal.