How Can Hedge Fund Managers Avoid Insider Trading Violations When Using Expert Networks in Connection with Leveraged Loan Market Transactions?

On July 27, 2011, compliance software provider Compliance11 hosted a webinar entitled, “Best Practices for use of Expert Networks and the Leveraged Loan Market.”  The purpose of the event was to provide “solutions, tactical input and strategies” designed to avoid insider trading pitfalls when hedge fund managers use expert networks in connection with leveraged loan trades.  For more on this general topic, see “Insider Trading and Debt Securities: Practical Tips for Hedge Funds in Coping with Regulatory Enforcement,” Hedge Fund Law Report, Vol. 4, No. 20 (Jun 17, 2011).  The webinar was moderated by Tracey Straub, Vice President of Strategy at Compliance11.  Laurence Herman, General Counsel and Managing Director of Gerson Lehrman Group (GLG), spoke about the use of expert networks, and Tim Houghton, Founding Principal of Cortland Capital Market Services (CCMS), spoke about trading in the leveraged loan market.  See “From Lender to Shareholder: How to Make Your Equity Work Harder for You,” Hedge Fund Law Report, Vol. 3, No. 20 (May 21, 2010).  This article summarizes the most important points made during the webinar.  In particular, this article discusses: the ways in which expert networks can diminish the opportunities for inappropriate conveyance of material nonpublic information (MNPI); four recommended steps for hedge fund managers to take prior to engaging an expert network firm or expert; seven best practices for using expert network firms; nine compliance policies and procedures for using experts; whether leveraged loans are “securities” for insider trading purposes; and how to manage MNPI at hedge fund managers that participate in the leveraged loan market.  See “Big Boys Don’t Cry: How ‘Big Boy’ Provisions Can Help Hedge Fund Managers Avoid Liability for Insider Trading Violations,” Hedge Fund Law Report, Vol. 2, No. 48 (Dec. 3, 2009).

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