SEC reportedly investigating stock manipulation following rumors of Samsung buying Blackberry


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Remember when we questioned whether some funny business was going on with the weird Samsung/Blackberry acquisition rumor (that was denied nearly as quickly as Reuters reported it) and pondered whether the SEC should investigate? Looks like we might have been on to something.

CNBC reports that the SEC is looking into a series of suspicious trades leading up to the publishing of the rumor. One trade that apparently stood out took place at 12:06PM on January 14th for 200,000 shares at $10 per pop.

The reason that would be so bad is because the rumor hiked Blackberry’s price to $12.60 per share at one point, and the purchaser of those shares might have been able to make $490,000 of profit on a meager $20,000 investment. As it stands, CNBC’s supposed source claims the SEC hasn’t yet determined if those shares were re-sold during the hours which Blackberry’s stock was at its highest.

blackberry logo

The SEC is also reportedly investigating the possibility that the unnamed source who provided the original details of this unsubstantiated story to Reuters had any trading activity as it pertains to Blackberry’s stock. Reuters itself is not currently said to be suspected of wrongdoing.

In a market where unchecked corruption can often slip by the SEC it isn’t unnatural for anyone to immediately suspect foul play when it comes to these sorts of things, but one has to wonder how powerful a source it was for Reuters to report the story in the first place. Reuters later clarified that their source said acquisition talks were being made between mere advisers and not actual company officials.

A publication which likely goes to great lengths to check the validity of their sources might only accept information from people directly within the company. We wouldn’t blame anyone for thinking some jaded Blackberry executive was looking to find an easy way out of a bleak future before the buildings came crashing down and decided to feed Reuters a convenient story to make that happen.

As it stands, though, this report — as well as the original rumor — are both products of unnamed sources and anonymous figures, so perhaps the ultimate moral of this story is that it isn’t wise to jump to far-reaching conclusions either way.

That’s not to say we wouldn’t love to see Samsung buying Blackberry, nor would we say there’s no possibility of that ever happening, but it’s starting to look like someone was merely running a game for the benefit of their own wallet. We’ll be keeping tabs on this one for sure.

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. It wouldn’t surprise me if Blackberry is guilty.
    Desperate times require desperate measures.

    1. dude this is one of the most profitable companies in the world!! #2008

    2. Hey this plus that $890k they sued Ryan Seacrest for over his company that made iphone keyboards that were ” black berryish ” they may be able to keep the lights on for another month!

  2. Oh, please. Today’s media don’t need a “powerful” source to print something. They write their articles based on Facebook posts and Twitter messages. There are no more credible sources. All the media fired old journalists that used to use only credible sources, and instead hired a bunch of kids that monitor social networks 24/7.

    1. This.

      Reuters used to mean something.

      Now it seems to mean Gong Show.

      1. Ahh internet credibility calling into question internet sources, I love it. Well, yeah, but hey, “I personally know the guy” ;)

        1. Yeah, when you read every other word and pick every fight you can, you can be a big man on the internet too. :D

          Oh wait. You are.

          Meanwhile, I don’t need permission to have an opinion on Reuters. Thanks for playing! :D

  3. I’m not following here, 200,000 shares at $10 each. That’s 200,000 x $10 = $2,000,000. So it’d be a $2,000,000 investment, not $20,000. Or am I missing something here?

    1. You’re not missing anything. It’s also a $520,000 windfall –> $2.60 x 200,000 shares. It’s a 26% gain. Fantastic, sure- but not $490,000 on the back of a measly $20,000.

    2. I was thinking the same thing…. Someone needs a math lesson

      1. I mean, I’m not a math major, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night. ;-)

    3. Unless they were waiting until the stock spiked and then buying options (betting the price goes back down).

  4. On the last story, I said “So Sammy leaks a fake story, people buy into it and the stock soars as they see someone might be able to do something useful with BB, and then BB says it is bogus and the stock tanks, then Sammy comes in and says, “hey, we can help, but we need to move now or never” while the stock is in the crapper so a cheap buy.”

    And then the user Jerry Rich said to that, “Hey idiot, do some research before you post.”

    So though I might have been wrong about which way the shenanigans were working, turns out, who is laughing now as it looks like shenanigans were at play after all Mr. Rich. So I was on to some degree about shenanigans.

  5. Why would anyone want to buy blackberry anyways? What would you get for that?

    It would be like buying a piece of fossilized T. Rex dung to put in the living room. It may make a great conversation piece at parties but at the end of the day it’s just an expensive piece of s***

    1. They have fantastic Enterprise Services Portfolio, and a strategy and user base to implement it. You should check that. They are not just a handset maker. They have what Samsung wants, actually.

    2. I just ordered a blackberry Q10 and I’m excited, never tried blackberry before

    3. The only use I can think of for Samsung would be getting their Safe security actually secure .

    4. First off because Blackberry has the absolute BEST….. Real Time Encryption Servers on the Planet. But the reality is that nowhere has it been evidenced that Samsung wanted to buy Blackberry. They have…. however already signed a joint venture deal to cooperate and allow Samsung to use these BES 5 Encryption Servers and allow Blackberry to sell KNOX 2.0 to their Enterprise customers. FACT; Blackberry still owns the Enterprise Market with BES Security and especially now with their Samsung partnership!

      Fact #2; Both Samsung and Blackberry are going full cross platform. Their Security Suites will gobble up any Enterprise customers they don’t already have and be installing and utilizing it all even on iOS devices for their Enterprise customers. For your Beloved CrApple, that means they’re about to get crapped on with Blackberry and Samsung teaming up on them in Enterprise!

      Fact #3; Only Samsung has scored any really big contracts lately with bulk sales to both US Navy and FBI. In fact the FBI decided to give all their business to Samsung by buying 26,500 KNOX 2.0 Licenses. Since then only Blackberry has scored any big deals to go with Samsung’s. Apple? Not even in the running until they get NSA approval like Samsung has!!! :DDD

      btw… since you most likely are thinking Samsung is the guilty party in this investigation. It’s all about outside speculators trying to big bucks off Blackberry shares that exploded after this rumor of Samsung buying Blackberry was released! So Sorry to Disappoint you, but Samsung if they wanted to buy Blackberry they would have already done so. But they’d only be duplicating all their efforts in Security and only gain BES15 Encryption Servers! TRUTH? It’s better to build corporate relations with others, rather than declaring iGhad on them where you’ll surely lose! ;-P ……and now after all the back biting Apple has dissed out on Samsung and they are still going to have them supplying screens, memory and A9 processors again this year. Meaning Samsung’s profits will be up this year no doubt!!! :D

      1. Thank you for that delightful information. From what I saw on the other topic of your responses to me I have to ask.. Does Samsung pay you by the paragraph?

  6. The source is a Blackberry exec so watch out for an investigation of the board.

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