California Hedge Fund Manager Charged with “Porfolio Pumping”

New York (HedgeCo.Net) – The Securities and Exchange Commission charged San Francisco-based MedCap Management & Research LLC and its principal Charles Frederick Toney, Jr. with defrauding investors via “portfolio pumping.”

“Fund investors relied on MMR and Toney to abide by their fiduciary duties and put the fund’s interests ahead of their own,” said San Francisco Regional Director of the SEC Marc J. Fagel in a press release yesterday.  “Instead, Toney engaged in trading activity which hid his poor performance.”

Engaging in “portfolio pumping” in this case meant that Toney invested heavily at the quarter’s end with a thinly-traded penny stock, which in turn quadrupled the stock price and allowed him to inflate his quarterly results to investors.  By doing this, the fund was able to hide what would have been a 40 percent quarterly loss for MedCap. 

Instead, the scheme helped the company up its reported value by $29 million thanks to Toney’s four day buying frenzy which pushed the price of the stock from $.85 to $3.72.  The fund was then able to charge higher management and performance fees that were based on the inflated numbers.

While MMR did not confirm or deny the allegations, the company has agreed to settle out of court by paying $100,000 in penalties and giving back the amount received in inflated management fees totaling over $70,000. Toney has also agreed not to act as an investment advisor for the next year.

Julie Scuderi
Senior Editor for HedgeCo.Net

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