Frontline's “To Catch a Trader”

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Frontline correspondent Martin Smith talks about his documentary “To Catch a Trader,” which goes inside the government’s ongoing, seven-year crackdown on insider trading. It draws on video of hedge fund titan Steven A. Cohen, incriminating FBI wiretaps of other traders, and interviews with both Wall Street and Justice Department insiders. "To Catch a Trader" is airing January 7 at 10 pm on PBS.


Martin Smith

Comments [12]

Robert from Winter Park, Fla.

It use to be that the pyramid had the trickle down effect with the concentration of wealth from the top slowly reaching the base(the everyday citizen who pays the bulk by spending the most via sheer numbers), now the pyramid is inverted and the the capstone has an unlimited supply of money coming from the base and every layer of the pyramid until it reaches the capstone or the small but highly concentrated percentage of people who have the lion's share of the wealth, power, laws and resources at their disposal. This is the greatest cash cow ever(ponzi) because if the supply (basic employment of everyday people in numbers)is there for the demand(the wealthy and powerful)to take it, then why not??? It's never going to stop, period! Is it morale, ethical, impartial or decent? No! As long as it's legal or even on the fringe thereof, profitable, controlling and intoxicating then who cares about the masses? We're WALL STREET as they say and that's all that matters to them.

Jan. 08 2014 12:58 PM

Wall Street is one big scam:

"How the NYSE REALLY Works"

Jan. 07 2014 04:43 PM
Charles from Tribeca

Why do people in the media always say "it happened under President Clinton." Shouldn't they say "it happened under Newt Gingrich and the "Contract with America" Both houses of congress were controlled by republicans.

President Clinton's veto of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 was overturned by republicans.

It was the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act or Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999 that repealed part of the Glass–Steagall Act of 1933. Gramm, Leach and Bliley are republicans.

Most banking deregulation was done along party lines when Clinton was President. House and Senate voting records used to be published in the NYT for everyone to see. I dare you to look back.

The nail in the 2008 financial collapse coffin was President Bush' 2005 nomination of Representative Christopher Cox to the S.E.C. Cox conveniently disappeared after the collapse. Please review his record - both in congress and in the S.E.C. The NYT posted S.E.C. voting audio immediately following the collapse.

It's easy but lazy to continue repeating what you heard someone else say. Say it enough and it becomes fact?

Jan. 07 2014 02:23 PM
art525 from Park Slope

Absolutely Sheldon.

Jan. 07 2014 02:06 PM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

Well said Art. Wall Street used to be about raising capital and funding companies, now it's about "proprietary trading" day to day "profit", and esoteric algorithms devoid of any relationship to the real word, outside of sucking capital from it.

Jan. 07 2014 12:28 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

To Art525

Nah, Wall Street was MUCH WORSE going back to the 1920s and earlier on! The gov't created the SEC and all these regulations, and it didn't help a wit. Just as the gov't created the FED to mitigate depressions and lower unemployment, and it didn't really help much either. For every lock a locksmith can develop, a smart crook can find a way to pick it. For every law and regulation, a smart lawyer and businessman will figure out a workaround. The answer in life is either don't gamble or be very lucky.

Jan. 07 2014 12:26 PM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

Yes, Preet has gone after individuals: hedge funds, insider trading but he has virtually NO criminal convictions on big banks, per orders from the Obama admin.

Jan. 07 2014 12:23 PM
art525 from Park Slope

I wonder if Cohen will be forced to sell his Damiehn Hirst dead shark.

Jan. 07 2014 12:21 PM
tom from astoria

When you researched Cohen's various dealings, did you get a look into the art world and how it rivals the world of finance in hyped investments, tricks and frauds?

Jan. 07 2014 12:20 PM
art525 from Park Slope

Dear jgarbuz, Wall Street used to be about raising capital. Today it is just a ponzi scheme and a hustle and traders don't have any morals. They are only pursuing quick profit. There is no long term building of companies just quarterly results. Sleazy.

Jan. 07 2014 12:20 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

Wall Street is the object of much muck-raking again. But Wall STreet is more than an elaborate gambling casino. It provides capital to people and companies with big ideas, some of which succeed and many of which fail. Wall Street is all about taking risks, and those who play should understand the risks they are taking.

Jan. 07 2014 12:03 PM

The Non-Crime of Insider Trading:

Jan. 07 2014 07:02 AM

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