Calata probe complete in 10 months — SEC
MANILA, Philippines - The investigation in the alleged price manipulation of shares of listed agribusiness firm Calata Corp. need 10 more months to complete, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
This even if the regulator has already filed a criminal complaint in November 2012 against 13 individuals involved in this high-profile stock market manipulation probe.
In a press briefing on January 10, SEC Commissioner Manuel Gaite said that the investigation has so far covered a first batch of respondents accounting for only 30% of the trades.
"The remaining 70% is still subject to investigation. We hope to complete the investigation over the next 10 months," Gaite said.
In the complaint the SEC filed before the Department of Justice, the corporate regulator said the individuals, who include former owners of Calata before its maiden market offer, and the firm's financial advisor, conspired with one another to artificially raise the price of Calata shares by as much as 226%.
Gaite added that the ongoing investigation includes Calata president Joseph Calata and Zandro Zulueta who was the chief executive officer of Calata's financial adviser for the firm's initial public offering (IPO).
This was triggered by the unusual trading of Calata Corp.’s shares, which more than tripled from its initial offer price of P7.50 within two weeks of listing on May 23, 2012, before abruptly falling in a few days. - Rappler.com