BREAKING NEWS: Firm Ensnared in Insider Trading Probe

The cat's out of the bag ... this was part of our 2011 April Fool's Day joke. Fool on!

The following article appeared in today's edition of Day Traders' Daily Digest. It has been reprinted, with/out permission.

A surprising new development has emerged since popular online investment company The Motley Fool announced earlier today that it has concealed a major short-term trading operation for nearly two decades.

The SEC declared this afternoon that it believes that the Alexandria, Va.-based firm may have used insider knowledge to benefit its proprietary trading software, known as ZippyTrade 2000. Authorities say they are particularly interested in The Motley Fool's purchase of specialty chemical maker Lubrizol shares just before the company announced on March 14 that it would be acquired by Berkshire Hathaway .

In a brief statement, the SEC's chief prosecutor, Roger Katana said, "The fact that the Motley Fool purchased $100 million in shares minutes before the acquisition was announced, and began selling their entire stake minutes just thereafter, that certainly raises a few eyebrows, even around here."

Motley Fool CEO Tom Gardner brushed off the attacks in a defiant response: "Bring your $2 million fine. We don't care. ZippyTrade 2000 made $20 million on that trade and probably thousands more in the time it took me to respond to these insignificant charges."

Mr. Gardner added in a less-than-germane written statement:

We realize that we forgot to include the ZippyTrade 2000 trademark symbol in our recent press release responding to those IRS fines. Consequently, we are issuing a cease and desist on all entities in the Qinghai province of China that are moving to mass produce a replica of our proprietary software under our proprietary brand. Messrs. 明明 and 馬友友, stop now. We know where you live, and we'll blast your freaking computer system back to the 15th century if you're not careful.

The latest accusations of insider trading could be particularly damaging, as they fall on the heels of leaked memo apparently instructing "trader/writers" in how to manipulate stock prices.

Please email us at speedtrade@fool.com to shares your questions and feedback.


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