SEC bars former Morgan Stanley broker involved in insider trading scheme

Michael Siva pleaded guilty to acting on nonpublic merger information

Oct 9, 2019 @ 2:21 pm

By Mark Schoeff Jr.

The Securities and Exchange Commission kicked out of the industry a former Morgan Stanley broker who participated in an insider-trading scheme.

In an Oct. 8 order, the SEC barred Michael Siva from working for a brokerage, investment adviser or other firm, and also from participating in any penny stock offerings.

A year ago, Mr. Siva pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit securities fraud in a New York federal court.

Mr. Siva admitted he recommended stock purchases for himself and his clients based on tips about pending mergers and acquisitions given to him by James Moodhe. Mr. Moodhe received information about the transactions from Daniel Rivas, a Bank of America consultant who was dating Mr. Moodhe's daughter.

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Mr. Moodhe passed Mr. Rivas' information to Mr. Siva from August 2014 to April 2017, according to prosecutors. Mr. Siva and Mr. Moodhe made more than $3 million, and Mr. Siva made thousands of dollars in commissions. Overall, the scheme generated about $5 million in profits.

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As a consultant in Bank of America's capital markets technology group, Mr. Rivas had access to information about corporate transactions.

Mr. Siva, 57, is a resident of West Orange, N.J. He worked from 2007-17 in Morgan Stanley's Morristown, N.J., office, according to his BrokerCheck profile. He is no longer registered with Finra.

Bloomberg News contributed to this story.

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