SEC Charges Former Apple Lawyer Gene Levoff With Insider Trading

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has charged Apple's former vice president of corporate law Gene Levoff with insider trading, according to a lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court of New Jersey on Tuesday.


The complaint alleges that Levoff traded on material nonpublic information about Apple's earnings three times during 2015 and 2016, avoiding losses of approximately $382,000, according to CNBC. Levoff also reportedly committed insider trading at least three additional times in 2011 and 2012.

CNBC reports that Levoff had inside access to not-yet-public earnings results and briefings on iPhone sales. In its complaint, the SEC alleged he purchased Apple shares and then profited when the stock rose after positive earnings reports, and likewise sold shares prior to weaker earnings reports.

The complaint states that Levoff was fired from Apple in September. In his position, he was responsible for Apple's compliance with securities laws, and he also signed off on at least one Apple acquisition back in 2017.

Tags: lawsuit, SEC

This article, "SEC Charges Former Apple Lawyer Gene Levoff With Insider Trading" first appeared on MacRumors.com

Discuss this article in our forums

Apple Now Has 132K Full-Time Employees, Spent $14.2B on R&D in 2018 Fiscal Year

Following the conclusion of its 2018 fiscal year, which ended September 29, Apple today filed its annual Form 10-K [PDF] with the SEC. We've combed through the exhaustive, legalese-rich 72-page report so you don't have to.


Highlights:
  • 9,000 more employees: Apple has 132,000 full-time employees as of the end of its 2018 fiscal year, up from 123,000 a year prior.
  • R&D expenses rise nearly $3 billion: Apple spent $14.2 billion on research and development in its 2018 fiscal year, a nearly 23 percent increase over the $11.5 billion it spent in its 2017 fiscal year.
  • Apple continues to execute its share repurchase program: Apple had 23,712 shareholders of record as of October 26, 2018, down from 25,333 as of October 20, 2017. There were 4,754,986 outstanding shares of Apple stock as of the end of its 2018 fiscal year.
  • Genius Bar expenses are down: Apple's expenses from warranty claims totaled $4.1 billion in its 2018 fiscal year, down from $4.3 billion in its 2017 fiscal year and $4.6 billion in its 2016 fiscal year.
  • CapEx to drop: Apple anticipates utilizing approximately $14 billion for capital expenditures during its 2019 fiscal year, down from $16.7 billion in its 2018 fiscal year. The capital is used towards Apple's manufacturing equipment, data centers, corporate facilities, and retail stores.
  • Apple snaps up more office space: Apple owned 16.5 million square feet and leased 24.3 million square feet of building space as of September 29, 2018. By comparison, Apple owned 13.4 million square feet and leased 23.0 million square feet of building space as of September 30, 2017.
Apple's annual Form 10-K also acknowledges that "international trade disputes" could adversely affect its business, almost certainly referring to an ongoing trade dispute between the United States and China:
International trade disputes could result in tariffs and other protectionist measures that could adversely affect the Company's business. Tariffs could increase the cost of the Company's products and the components and raw materials that go into making them. These increased costs could adversely impact the gross margin that the Company earns on its products. Tariffs could also make the Company's products more expensive for customers, which could make the Company's products less competitive and reduce consumer demand. Countries may also adopt other protectionist measures that could limit the Company's ability to offer its products and services. Political uncertainty surrounding international trade disputes and protectionist measures could also have a negative effect on consumer confidence and spending, which could adversely affect the Company's business.
Apple's annual Form 10-K can be viewed or downloaded in a variety of formats from the company's Investor Relations website.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Tags: AAPL, SEC

Discuss this article in our forums

Apple Seeks to Block Shareholder Proposals on Environment and Human Rights Given Its Existing Focus on Those Issues

Apple is said to be "pushing back" on multiple shareholder proposals that deal with issues like Apple's greenhouse gas emissions, climate change, and human rights, discovered in letters the Cupertino company sent to the Securities and Exchange Commission in November (via Reuters). At least four proposals were argued as relating to "ordinary business," with Apple further stating that they are "not necessary" due to the company's day-to-day focus on those issues.

Apple's letters state that this means the proposals can be left off of the proxy it is expected to publish in early 2018, ahead of its annual shareholders meeting where these proposals would be heard. Apple says these are areas it "routinely reviews" and therefore they do not represent "significant policy issues" that it classifies as requiring a shareholder vote.


Still, some activists argue that the move by Apple "could sharply restrict investor rights," with the company using a newly enacted guidance put in place by the SEC on November 1 in its attempt to block the proposals.
While companies routinely seek permission to skip shareholder proposals, Apple’s application of the new SEC guidance shows how it could be used to ignore many investor proposals by claiming boards routinely review those areas, said Sanford Lewis, a Massachusetts attorney representing Apple shareholders who had filed two of the resolutions.

Were the SEC to side with Apple, “this would be an incredibly dangerous precedent that would essentially say a great many proposals could be omitted,” Lewis said.
Apple's letter is reported as specifically citing the new SEC guidance. Some of the four shareholder proposals include calls for Apple to establish a "human rights committee" that could focus on tackling topics like censorship within the company, as well as asking for further reporting by Apple on its ability to cut greenhouse gas emissions, and other environmental pledges.

Apple's letters to the SEC offered details as to why the shareholder proposals and resolutions are unnecessary. This included references to recent updates in its 2017 Environmental Responsibility Report, where the company pledged to end mining and switch to 100 percent recycled material for its products.
In the case of the measure on greenhouse gas emissions, filed by Jantz Management of Boston, for instance, Apple argues it already has taken many steps to improve the sustainability of its operations such as switching to greener materials and helping suppliers use more renewable energy.
Apple's 2017 shareholders meeting was held on February 28, with that date being confirmed on January 6, so we'll likely know more about the 2018 meeting early in the new year.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.


Discuss this article in our forums