* Highest-ever penalty levied in Japan for market
manipulation - SESC
* SESC says could not find evidence of insider trading
TOKYO Dec 13 Japan's securities watchdog said
on Thursday it fined Tiger Asia Partners 67.71 million yen
($816,500), saying the U.S. hedge fund manipulated the market
through its deals in shares of Yahoo Japan Corp.
The move comes a day after the fund settled insider trading
charges in the United States.
Japan's Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission
(SESC) cooperated with U.S. regulators during the inspection of
Tiger Asia, which resulted in the highest-ever penalty levied by
the Japanese regulator in a market manipulation case, the SESC
The Japanese watchdog could not find evidence of insider
trading by Tiger Asia in the Yahoo share case, the SESC said.
Tiger Asia Partners' funds purchased a total of 32,960 Yahoo
shares from four brokers on March 17, 2009, triggering a more
than 4 percent jump in the shares to 25,340 yen by the close
from around 24,310 yen near the end of the morning session, the
The funds later sold a total of 690,000 Yahoo shares,
including the ones which they owned before that day, after Yahoo
announced a share buyback plan, the watchdog said.
The SESC said Tiger Asia funds' heavy purchases from several
brokers gave the impression to the market the share was in
demand and caused Yahoo shares to surge on the day.
The Tiger Asia funds' purchases accounted for 30 percent of
trading volume of Yahoo shares during the afternoon session on
the day, the SESC said.