SEC okays ‘wash sales’ offers of DBP, First Metro

The Securities and Exchange Commission accepted settlement offers worth P2.05 million from former top officials of the Development Bank of the Philippines and First Metro Investments Corp. allegedly involved in the “wash sales”.

The SEC in an order approved the offers made by DBP officials, namely former DBP president and chief executive Gil Buenventura, Lydia Echauz, Vaughn Montes, Rafael Danilo Ranil Reynante and Mariquita Agena, and First Metro and its officers, namely Reynaldo Montalbo, Anna Graziela Banaad, David Ignacio Estacio, Percival Pena, Bernice Joy Nobleza and Jonthan Tabac.

The DBP and First Metro officials offered the settlements pending their appeal of the August 2016 decision of the SEC’s Enforcement and Investor Protection Department finding them in violation of the provisions of the Securities Regulation Code.

“Thus, considering that the settlement offers as approved by the Commission En Banc are already paid and accepted by the Commission accordingly, the the case is now deemed settled without any determination of fault or guilt on the part of Gil Buenventura, Lydia Echauz, Vaughn Montes and Rafael Danilo Ranil Reynante,” the SEC said.

DBP in 2015 was allegedly involved in “wash sales,” in an illegal trading activity in which an investor sells a losing security to claim a capital loss, only to repurchase it again within 30 days of the sale.    

State-owned DBP allegedly engaged in over P14 billion of what critics described as “wash sales” that resulted in the booking of P717 million in losses for the government financial institution.

The “wash sales” transactions were made through First Metro, the investment banking unit of the Metrobank group.

The SEC department in August 2016 penalized Buenaventura, Echauz, Montes and Agena for P500,000 penalty each; Reynante with P300,000; First Metro, P1 million; Tabac, P300,000; and Montalbo, Banaad, Estacio, Pena, and Nobleza, P100,000 each.

Topics: Securities and Exchange Commission , SEC , wash sales , Development Bank of the Philippines , DBP , First Metro Investments Corp.
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