MarketWatch First Take
Bad call: SEC throws out Eddie Murray8/17/12 5:28 PM ET (MarketWatch)
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- The feds finally got their clean-up hitter.
Thank you, Mary Schapiro and the Securities and Exchange Commission, for finally going after some of the biggest players of the financial crisis and purveyors of unbridled greed that ruled that economy-crushing era.
Schapiro and the SEC announced charges Friday against Eddie Murray. Yes, Murray the baseball hall of famer, Murray of 3,255 hits, Murray the eight-time all star is now Murray the alleged inside trader. See report on SEC charges against Murray.
Murray, who played for the Baltimore Orioles and six other teams during a 20-year career in the major leagues, allegedly made $235,314 in illegal profits on knowledge had of a merger that had not been announced to the public.
He's agreed to settle the civil case without admitting or denying wrongdoing.
To give you some perspective of the enormous gains Murray made -- it took
Lehman Brothers chief executive Dick Fuld was awarded a $22 million compensation package in 2007 -- $5 million of which was cash. The same year Jimmy Cayne, who led Bear Stearns & Co., was given a package worth $34 million. .
Of course, if Murray was trading with inside information, then it's good the SEC went after him. But doesn't it strike the commission, Chairman Schapiro and enforcement chief Robert Khuzami as a little bit strange that a baseball player with one sketchy deal was forced to pay back all of his allegedly ill-gotten gains when bankers with millions of bum deals keep the loot?
SEC critics including William Black, former head of the institute of fraud prevention, say investigators haven't seriously tried to pursue big cases against Wall Street. Black obviously hasn't talked to Murray or his teammate Doug DeCinces. . .
Apparently the SEC won't rest until Major League Baseball is brought to justice for wrecking the economy.