Disclosure Insight Thursday said that it appears Jefferies has been involved “in an undisclosed SEC investigation” that goes back to April, based on data it has received from the Securities and Exchange Commission under the Freedom of Information Act.
It’s unclear what the investigation is about, and Jefferies said it didn’t know about it.
John Gavin, president of Disclosure Insight, told me the investigation is by the regulator’s enforcement division.
Here’s today’s note in its entirety:
Based on data we acquired from the SEC under the Freedom of Information Act, as recently as 28-Sep-11, it appears Jefferies Group has been recently involved in an undisclosed SEC investigation that goes as far back as Apr-11. A prior response from May-09 showed no signs of SEC investigative activity. Given the current environment for financial institutions (e.g., debt issues in Europe, new regulations in the U.S. and abroad, market volatility, etc.) and the number of disclosed SEC investigations at other financial institutions, our data point on JEF should not be ignored.
This would not be the first time that JEF failed to disclose the existence of an SEC investigation while it was active. Some possible reasons specific to Jefferies that could be behind the responses we’ve recently received from the SEC include:
The SEC, per its policy, declined comment.
While it's impossible to say what this amounts to, if anything at all, it’s certainly worth noting in the context of the day and the environment. Current Disclosure Insight lists around two dozen companies with undisclosed investigations.
Jefferies reported it has a limited number of routine regulatory reviews in process, all of which are insignificant in scope and absolutely immaterial to Jefferies.
*This post has been updated.
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