Thursday, December 29, 2005

CTV Whistleblower: Evidence of insider trading scandal

Note: Updates below

CTV Whistleblower has a report on evidence they have found on the insider trading scandal.

First, several credible sources in financial circles confirmed to CTV they heard definitively -- before the markets closed -- that an announcement would be coming after the close of trading that day.

Many people were exchanging emails, about an anticipated 5 p.m. news conference. That seemingly advance notice contradicts the Finance Department's position that they told no one -- not even privately -- about the timing of the hotly anticipated announcement, not the day or the hour it would come.

"There was no specific advance notice whatsoever," Goodale told CTV.

It gets worse (for the Liberals)

More important, perhaps, CTV discovered evidence, in writing, that seems to suggest some people had advance knowledge of exactly what the finance minister was going to say.

That evidence is in public bulletin board postings on a popular investor's internet site called "Stockhouse". The first posting -- at 11:14 that morning -- came from someone who wrote: "Skuttlebutt is that he (Goodale) will soon announce a reduction on dividend taxation to 'even the playing field'." This information was posted a full seven hours before the minister's press conference, and possibly viewed by many potential investors before the markets closed.

The second posting on the same site came from another person, who also seemed to know what was coming. At 3:59, they posted this message: "The hot rumour is that the government's decision on the income trust issue is that they are going to make a more level playing field by reducing the degree of double taxation which currently exists on dividends by increasing the dividend tax credit."

The Finance Minister used very similar wording when he made his announcement two hours later.
So here you have a straightforward contradiction to the Finance Department's assertion that the timing of the announcement was kept private, and people discussing exactly the announcement that Mr. Goodale made. This is too much to be coincidence.

UPDATE: MK Braaten has more on the CTV reporting, including quotes from the Newscast by people confirming they received emails telling them about the announcement.

UPDATE 2: Angry In The Great White North zeros in on the Prime Minister's Office as a likely source of the leak, based on communications he has received from well-placed Liberals. Bourque Newswatch links to a Globe & Mail report in which Pat Breton, a spokesman for Mr. Goodale, confirms that PMO aides were told about a taxation change "sometime immediately before" the announcement. Is this going to explode into an internal war between the PMO and Finance Dept.?

UPDATE 3: The Toronto Star gives more evidence of the existence of the leak:
Sandy McIntyre was about to head for a noon meeting at the King Edward Hotel on Nov. 23 when a phone call alerted the Bay Street stock picker that Finance Minister Ralph Goodale, whose government was days away from calling an election, was poised to make a major announcement.

When the senior portfolio manager at Sentry Select Capital returned to his office about an hour later at 12:30 p.m., McIntyre says, he fielded another call. This time, a trading floor contact "who was clearly excited" boasted his bank's investment adviser had been told by a government source that Goodale would reveal how the Liberals planned to handle dividend taxes.

Previous articles about: Liberal insider trading scandal
Ralph Goodale may quit
Some reaction to RCMP probe
RCMP launches probe into Liberal insider trading scandal
Further evidence of Liberal insider trading scandal?
The corrupt Liberal’s insider trading scandal


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