Court finds Mark Warminger from Milford Asset Management manipulated the market

The High Court has found that Mark Warminger from Milford Asset Management did, in fact, manipulate the markets despite the claims otherwise of Brian Gaynor.

Milford Asset Management’s Mark Warminger manipulated the market when trading two stocks, a High Court judge has ruled.

The Financial Markets Authority alleged that 10 instances of Warminger’s trading breached market manipulation rules during a four-week trial last year.  

He was accused of breaching securities laws that prohibits trading that is not for a genuine commercial purpose and creates an artificial appearance in the market in relation to 10 sharemarket trading actions carried out in 2014.

It was the country’s first market manipulation case to come to trial.

In a just released decision, Chief High Court Judge Geoffrey Venning said the FMA had satisfied the court on the balance of probabilities that Warminger “manipulated the market” in specific trading of Fisher & Paykel Healthcare (FPH) shares and A2 Milk (ATM) shares.

The judge declared that Warminger breached the Securities Market Act “by manipulating the market for shares in FPH on 27 May 2014 by increasing the offer quote and price for FPH shares and maintaining them at a higher level than otherwise would have been the case and also by entering a crossing for the sale of FPH shares which created a misleading appearance as the price of the crossing was influenced by his earlier trades”.

Justice Venning also declared that Warminger breached that same law “by manipulating the market for shares in ATM on 9 July 2014 by increasing the offer quote and price for ATM shares and maintaining them at a higher level than otherwise would have been the case and has also created a misleading appearance as to the demand and/or price for ATM shares on the day”.

It has yet to be decided if Warminger must pay a penalty for these breaches and what any penalty would amount to.

The maximum possible penalty is $1 million per trade.

Dirty, dirty Mark. And Dirty, dirty Milford.

So, are Milford going to compensate clients for the performance fees they charge?

Or hand back their awards in the years that Mark Warminger won them?

I think we should know.

 

– NZ Herald

 


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