The Securities and Exchange Commission has ordered an adminstrative hearing into the alleged manipulation of the price of the stock of International Business Machines Corp. by several Chicago broke-dealers.
In a brief announcement yesterday the SEC alleged that broker-dealers sought to manipulate IBM shares through a series of transactions on the New York Stock Exchange and the Chicago Board Options Exchange.
The SEC named Chicago Financial Partnership, Jameco Investments, Thomas J. Connelly Jr. III, Philip J. Dalman, James M. Chipman, Gail J. Connelly and Michael A. Faberburg, all of the .Chicago area.
The SEC, which alleges fraud and manipulation of the market by certain of the Chicagoans, claims the series of questionable transactions took place during the week of July 11, 1977.
The purpose of the NYSE transactions was to depress the price of the IBM options, the SEC said.
A stock option is a contract to buy or sell a specified number of shares of a traded security at a given price within a given period of time. The price of an IBM option is tied to the price of IBM common on the NYSE.
The SEC also alleges that Connelly and Dalman, as part of the alleged manipulation, sought to depress the price of IBM common by a series of short sales.
This means that the broker-dealers allegedly "sold" IBM shares that actually were not theirs to help drive down the price of the stock, apparently in violation of the rules on short selling.