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

ALEXANDRIA, VA -- Brothers David and Tom Gardner issued a formal statement at a media luncheon to respond to news that the Internal Revenue Service has levied a fine against The Motley Fool in the amount of $4,949,101.99 for not properly documenting more than 17,000 trades made with their proprietary short-term trading platform, ExcelsiorSpeedTrade900LX™. The IRS has also put the Fool on probation for 19 days. 

The full, unedited text of their response is here:

As we've said repeatedly since founding The Motley Fool in 1993, we believe in full transparency and accountability. Thus, we have no problem confirming the IRS allegations. We intentionally stopped filing any of the paperwork that would be necessary to account for trades made with ExcelsiorSpeedTrade9000LX™. Every moment spent doing menial tasks like "paperwork" is a minute we're not TRADING. Our system is making us so much money that -- as is common practice across Wall Street -- it is far more profitable to pay the fine and take the reputational hit than it is to comply with existing law.

We expect to be fined again for violations during the probationary period. We also expect any damage to our brand and reputation to get washed out in the next news cycle.

If anyone in the room would like a free copy of our ZippyTrade2000 software and cassette package, just join the line in the back of the room.

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