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July 31, 2009

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Crackdown on securities cheats

CHINA is beefing up efforts even further in a bid to combat securities-related crimes.

In the past three years, China's securities regulator has halted 205 people from trading on the mainland's two stock markets over misconduct and 55 of them received life-time bans.

The China Securities Regulatory Commission also confiscated 191 million yuan (US$27.95 million) in illegal gains and handed out 216 million yuan in fines from 154 cases as of June 30, it said in a statement on Wednesday.

The CSRC obtained the right from the central government in October 2006 to deal with securities crimes.

The commission fined 548 people, issued warnings to 587 and confiscated the securities business licenses from 30 others in the three years.

Yao Gang, vice chairman of the commission, said that the regulator had noticed a new wave of irregularities recently and pledged to rev up initiatives to head off misconduct.

The commission has set up a system to pursue and punish illegal activities by coordinating with the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges.

"The two exchanges should report any illegal activities or trends at regular meetings with the commission to strengthen law enforcement and further crack down on insider trading," Yao said.

Since the two exchanges set up disciplinary committees last year, the Shanghai bourse has penalized 214 people in 97 cases and the Shenzhen bourse has taken action against 67 companies, the commission said.

"The current bull run has stoked up regulatory concerns about speculation and manipulation," said Wu Ke, a Zhongtian Investment Consulting Co analyst. "The securities regulator has shown a tough stance as a warning against misconduct."


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