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Quant Analyst Charged With Front-Running Trades at Employer

·1 min read

(Bloomberg) -- Sergei Polevikov, a former quantitative analyst, was criminally charged by prosecutors for allegedly using confidential information to front-run trades by his employers.

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Polevikov, 48, is accused of using inside information he learned about potential trades on behalf of his firm’s clients and using it to trade for himself in a brokerage account that he opened in his wife’s name. Prosecutors said he took advantage of “relatively small price movements” that come after large trades and earned $8.5 million.

Polevikov, of Port Washington, New York, was also sued by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The SEC said in a statement that he “worked as a quantitative analyst at two prominent asset management firms.” It said that from at least January 2014 through October 2019, Polevikov “had access to real-time, non-public information about the size and timing of his employers’ securities orders and trades” and used it to secretly trade ahead of his employer.

Read the criminal complaint here

Polevikov is charged with one count of securities fraud, one count of wire fraud and one count of investment company fraud. He was arrested Wednesday night and will be presented Thursday afternoon before Magistrate Judge James L. Cott, according to a statement from the office of the U.S. attorney in Manhattan.

A lawyer for Polevikov couldn’t immediately be identified.

The criminal case is U.S. v. Polevikov, 21-mj-9162; the civil case is SEC v. Polevikov, 21-cv-7925; U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

(Adds details starting in fourth paragraph.)

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