Australian Institute of Criminology

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Casino capitalism? Insider trading in Australia

Australian studies in law, crime and justice

Roman Tomasic, with the collaboration of Brendan Pentony
ISBN 0 642 15877 0
Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology, March 1991

Abstract

Is insider trading a serious problem in Australia? Market observers have reported that it was seen "all the time involving brokers and institutions" or that they saw insider trading "... during the bull market". According to some financial advisers, "in terms of its frequency, insider trading is a small matter but it has the potential to destroy the market". According to others, there is a link between takeovers and insider trading. What is the true story?

Casino capitalism? Insider trading in Australia gives a revealing insight into insider trading in Australia. Officials, brokers, merchant bankers, partners in law firms, financial advisers, financial journalists, and many others were interviewed and invited to offer their perceptions of the incidence of insider trading and to comment on the effectiveness of regulation in the industry. The findings of the Griffiths Committee of 1989 and the Federal Government's new insider trading legislation are also examined closely. Case law is discussed in detail and comparisons are drawn with the securities industry and the securities legislation in the United Kingdom and the United States of America.