Microsoft-Activation Deal: Option Trades Gain, US Report

U.S. federal prosecutors and securities regulators are investigating large-scale bets that Barry Dealer, Alexander von Furstenberg and David Geffen shared in Activision Blizzard in January, just days before video game maker Microsoft agreed to the acquisition, according to a report on Tuesday.

The IAC chairman dealer, his step-son Von Furstenberg and music mogul Geffen have made an unrealistic profit of about $ 60 million (about Rs 459.58 crore) in the options trade, based on the recent activation share price of around $ 80 (about Rs 6,100). The report cites people familiar with the matter.

The Judiciary is investigating whether any option has violated trade insider-trading laws, the report said, adding that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is conducting a separate civil insider-trading investigation.

Judiciary and SEC spokesmen did not respond to a request for comment. The IAC did not respond to a request for comment by Reuters, while Von Furstenberg and Geffen were not immediately available for comment.

The dealer confirmed that regulators had been contacted by the three, but added that none of them had non-public information about the Microsoft-Activation Agreement, WSJ said.

“It was just a lucky bet,” the dealer told the Journal. “We did not act without any information from anyone. This is one of those coincidences.”

In January, Microsoft announced plans to buy Activision’s “Call of Duty” maker for $ 68.7 billion (approximately 52 526,224.14 billion) in the largest gaming industry deal in history.

Thomson Reuters 2022

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