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FBI probes potential Heinz deal insider trading

FBI probes potential Heinz deal insider trading
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The FBI has said it is joining the US Securities and Exchange Commission in an investigation into possible insider trading before the takeover of food firm Heinz.

That is because of unusual activity on options markets one day before the deal was announced.

“The FBI is aware of the trading anomalies the day before Heinz’ announcement,” a spokesman said. “The FBI is consulting with the SEC to determine if a crime was committed.”

The focus in on a Zurich-based brokerage account that allegedly was used to trade Heinz option contracts.

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway and Brazil’s 3G Capital announced last Thursday they would buy the baked bean and ketchup maker.

Swiss authorities have already said they have not been asked to help with the US investigation.

The SEC enforcement action marked the second time in six months regulators had taken aim at alleged insider trading in a deal involving 3G.

The first instance, last September, was related to 3G’s 2010 purchase of Burger King.