The Securities and Exchange Commission announced record whisleblower awards for the fiscal year of $175 million awarded to 39 individuals.
The SEC announced giving a more than $30 million award to two insider whistleblowers who gave tips to the agency and led to an investigation. The first whistleblower, alerted the SEC staff of a potential wrongdoing and provided substantial assistant and as a result, received $22 million. The second whistleblower provided valuable information for the investigation and received $7 million.
The Commission also awarded four other individuals a total of $5 million for providing critical information that alerted the agency to alleged wrongdoing.
Stephanie Avakian, Director of the Division of Enforcement commented:
Today marks the end of a record-setting year for the whistleblower program. We’ve made significant strides to further streamline and accelerate the evaluation of claims under the rules, substantially increasing the rate at which whistleblower claims are evaluated and awards are issued. We remain committed to rewarding the valuable contributions of whistleblowers in a timely and efficient manner
Jane Norberg, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower said:
The awards issued in the last month demonstrate the variety and breadth of tips received from whistleblowers. Award recipients in the last month include company outsiders who provided independent analysis, international whistleblowers who shone a light on hard to detect overseas conduct, and company insiders who provided critical information and substantial assistance that helped the Commission better protect investors and the marketplace. And today, the four individuals awarded each provided the tip that sparked the opening of the case.
So far, the agency has awarded over $562 million to total of 106 individuals since the first award was issued in 2012. Payment of the awards is taken out of an investor protection fund set up by Congress. It is financed through monetary sanctions of security law violations paid to SEC.
To be eligible for award, a whistleblower needs to voluntarily provide the commission with reliable information that leads to successful enforcement action. The awards range between 10 and 30 % of the money collected by SEC when the sanction is for more than $1 million.
According to the Dodd-Frank Act, SEC must protect the identity of the whistleblower and not disclose any information that could reveal it.
Independent writer and journalist, working in the global online trading sector, Steffy is the Editor of LeapRate. She has previous experience as a copywriter and has been with the company since January 2020. Steffy has a British and American Studies degree from St. Kliment Ochridski University in Sofia.