Mortgage rates dropped this week after three straight weeks of increases. (Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg)
SEC
Whistleblower gets $17 million reward

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is giving a $17 million award to a former company employee who gave information that helped advance an agency investigation.

“The information and assistance provided by this whistleblower enabled our enforcement staff to conserve time and resources and gather strong evidence supporting our case,” SEC enforcement chief Andrew Ceresney said in a statement Thursday announcing the award, the second-biggest ever in the agency’s five-year-old whistleblower program.

Whistleblowers are eligible for an award if they voluntarily provide the SEC with unique information that leads to a successful enforcement action. The awards can range from 10 percent to 30 percent of the money collected on sanctions beyond $1 million.

Jordan Thomas, chair of the whistleblower representation practice at law firm Labaton Sucharow, said that his client is the only whistleblower who got an award and that the case involved “a major player in the financial services industry.” By law, the SEC doesn’t reveal the identity of the whistleblowers.

— Bloomberg News

CORPORATIONS
Burger King rejects board diversity plan

Shareholders of Restaurant Brands International, owner of Burger King and Tim Hortons, rejected a proposal that would require a clear plan to add women to the company’s all-male board.

The motion by OceanRock Investments motion was defeated at Thursday’s annual meeting in Oakville, Ontario, according to the Canadian Press. The Vancouver-based investor became a shareholder when Miami-based Burger King acquired the Canadian doughnut chain Tim Hortons in 2014 for about $11 billion. The combined company is based in Canada.

Before the merger, Tim Hortons had three female directors. Having an all-male board is a stark contrast with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s pledge to ensure that half his cabinet members are women. Restaurant Brands has said that although it has changed its guidelines to make diversity considerations more apparent, a specific pledge to add women might hamper the flexibility to pick the best candidates.

Restaurant Brands didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

— Bloomberg News

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