Once again, as Wall Street waited for happy hour, we Fools waded into 8-K filings that, if the timing is to be believed, executives would rather you not read.
Kicking off today's list is this filing from data-storage specialist EMC (NYSE: EMC ) , which reports that CEO Joe Tucci has filed a 10b5-1 trading plan to sell as many as 840,000 shares -- worth more than $16.2 million -- before the end of the year. Tucci held 8.7 million shares as of March, 6.7 million of which were connected with stock option grants.
Then there's this 8-K from coal miner CONSOL Energy (NYSE: CNX ) , which announced that executive Nicholas DeIuliis would receive $407,000 in a settlement. DeIuliis is CEO of CONSOL subsidiary CNX Gas and claims that he was due the payment because of the company's recently amended "Retirement Restoration Plan." (Appropriate name, no?)
Diff'rent strokes for Willis
Willis Group (NYSE: WSH ) isn't as lucky. Along with peers Marsh & McLennan (NYSE: MMC ) and Aon (NYSE: AOC ) , Willis long ago agreed to stop accepting commissions from insurers while acting as an underwriter, thanks to the efforts of current New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who was state attorney general at the time of the deal.
Now, according to this 8-K, the state has agreed to give Willis some latitude, in clarifying what fees it can and can't take in working directly with insurers. Quoting:
The Company, in connection with its insurance brokerage, agency, producing, consulting and other services in placing, renewing, consulting on or servicing any insurance policy, shall accept only: a specific fee to be paid by the client; a specific percentage commission on premium to be paid by the insurer set at the time of purchase, renewal, placement or servicing of the insurance policy; a specific fee for service(s) to be paid by the insurer set at the time of purchase, renewal, placement or servicing of the insurance policy; or a combination of fee and commission. The Company may not accept any such commissions or fees unless, before the binding of any such policy, or provision of any such service: (a) the Company in plain, unambiguous written language fully discloses such commissions or fees in either dollars or percentage amounts, and the specific nature of each service for which fees are to be received; and (b) the U.S. client consents in writing.
That's still a pretty tight leash, but it's better than the old rules Willis had been subject to. Just ask the good folks at Marsh Mac.
Wait. You mean I can't do that?
But my favorite filing this week comes courtesy of PokerTek (Nasdaq: PTEK ) , which has created an automated poker table called PokerPro. By eliminating the need for a dealer, the theory goes, the company can juice casino profits by dealing more hands, more often.
Profit-seeking is a noble goal, especially for an unabashed capitalist like me. But there's a difference between profit-seeking and profit-taking, even if Chief Financial Officer Christopher Daniels doesn't recognize it.
According to this filing, Daniels might have used the company credit card to fund personal purchases. We don't how much and for what (please, God, tell me it's not ice sculptures), but the Audit Committee of the company's board has commenced an independent investigation of all corporate credit card use. Daniels is on administrative leave until that investigation is resolved.
I know I shouldn't have to state the obvious here, but I'll do it anyway: Stay away from this stock until the Audit Committee reveals its findings. Or, in poker parlance, treat PokerTek the same way you would deal with an off-suit seven-deuce in hold 'em poker: fold.
Found a late filing we Fools should see? Let me know.
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Fool contributor Tim Beyers usually favors two scoops of ice cream over the inside scoop. Tim didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. Find Tim's portfolio here and his latest blog commentary here. The Motley Fool's disclosure policy may be filed under "F" for fair, or Foolish.