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Mon Mar 19, 2018, 10:18 PM

U.S. SEC awards Merrill Lynch whistleblowers a record $83 million

Source: Reuters

BANKS MARCH 19, 2018 / 3:38 PM / UPDATED 7 HOURS AGO

U.S. SEC awards Merrill Lynch whistleblowers a record $83 million

Pete Schroeder
3 MIN READ

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has awarded a record $83 million to three whistleblowers tied to a 2016 settlement with Bank of America Corp’s Merrill Lynch brokerage unit, the whistleblowers’ attorney said on Monday.

The SEC announced the size of the awards on Monday but did not say which case led it to pay two whistleblowers $50 million and a third $33 million. A law firm representing the whistleblowers said their clients tipped off the agency to the misuse of customer funds by the brokerage.

“Our clients represent the very best of Wall Street and feel vindicated by the SEC’s determination,” Jordan Thomas, a partner at Labaton Sucharow, said in a statement. “By coming forward, these courageous executives protected millions of Merrill Lynch’s customers.”

Merrill Lynch admitted in the $415 million settlement to wrongdoing in misusing customer cash by holding up to $58 billion a day in a clearing account when it should have been held in reserve. The SEC also said the company engaged in complex options trades to artificially reduce the amount of reserve cash it must hold for customers.

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Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-sec-whistleblower/u-s-sec-awards-merrill-lynch-whistleblowers-a-record-83-million-idUSKBN1GV2MT

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