Ex-Fidelity Workers Strike Deal on Gift Probe

Eight (mostly) former employees of Fidelity Investments have reached preliminary settlements with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in a gift-taking probe, according to Reuters, citing court documents.

The SEC had in March charged Fidelity, Peter Lynch, and 12 other former or current employees of the firm with improperly accepting travel, entertainment, and other lavish gifts paid for by Wall Street brokers (see Fidelity to Pay $42M into Funds After Report Reveals Brokers’ Gifts to Traders).

Subsequently, Fidelity had agreed to pay $8 million and Lynch about $20,000 to settle the charges. Both Fidelity and Lynch, who ran the Magellan fund from 1977 to 1990, settled without denying or admitting the charges. Two other individuals also settled in March.

Of the remaining 10, eight have now entered into in-principle settlements with the SEC’s Division of Enforcement, according to Reuters, citing documents from a Boston administrative court that were provided to Reuters by the SEC. The settlements, whose terms are not public yet, are subject to approval by the SEC, according to the report.

The Reuters report quoted a Fidelity spokeswoman as saying that seven of the eight individuals are no longer employed at Fidelity. One individual, who is still employed by the firm, has not been on its trading desk for more than three years, according to the report.