Loose Ends | Freyne Land

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Loose Ends

Posted By on Tue, Aug 29, 2006 at 7:50 AM

Good Morning!  (*Coffee-break Update below!...followed by *Lunchtime Update)

You know, people can criticize Channel 3 News all they want - it’s a free country. But how about a little “bravo” for the fact WCAX-TV posts its news scripts?

Hear, hear!

This from the lips of the one-and-only Marselis Parsons last night during the Six:

"Article in the New York Times has raised questions for U-S Senate candidate Rich Tarrant...in his previous career as head of I-D-X.

"The article suggests there may have been some suspicious stock trading -- just before the sale of the South Burlington software company to General Electric. The article says abnormal trading occurred. The article adds that the price and number of shares traded in IDX stock jumped -- when company officials talked with G-E, and the buyer agreed to increase its bid by 5-percent. The trading is reportedly being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

"Tarrant -- who is a republican candidate for U-S Senate -- issued a written statement -- saying .... "IDX took every appropriate step to keep all information concerning the deal with GE Healthcare confidential and secure. As Chairman, all stock transactions made by me were public for shareholders and the market to evaluate."

"GE issued a similar statement, saying its employees are prohibited from discussing possible acquisitions. And, they said they saw NO signs of unusual trading. The IDX sale was just one of three dozen noted in the Times article that allegedly exhibited abnormal trading. The article suggests that such trading is becoming a "systemic problem" on Wall Street.

"We have a crew interviewing Tarrant -- and will bring you more of his response -- on the Channel 3 News at 11.”

I fell asleep around 10.

The 11 o’clock script isn’t posted yet......stay tuned.


Coffee-Break Update: (Lunch update below*)

Funny. it’s 10:30 in the morning and the Channel 3 News website - that informed Vermonters depend on - responds with this when one clicks on the link to Monday’s 11.p.m. news script:

•We're sorry, but the script you have selected has not yet been posted to our web site.
•The scripts are normally available within one hour of the actual broadcast.
•Occasionally, problems arise and more time may be required. On extremely rare occasions, it may not be possible to post a script. Please check again later.
•We apologize for any inconvenience.

The suspense builds!

Meanwhile, a kind "Freyne Land" poster - “bottomline” - has provided this very interesting link to previous, proven, IDX insider-trading.

I’m shocked! Shocked! Shocked to find stock fraud going on anywhere near IDX!

Channel 3 News did report the IDX insider-trader's conviction two-years ago. No big deal. Got all of three-sentences:

"A former Williston resident is going to jail for insider trading and securities fraud. 46-year old Jay Laveson worked as a financial analyst for I-D-X. He pleaded guilty in March to using his position with the company to make personal profits in the stock market. Laveson was sentenced today to 15 months in federal prison and two years of supervised released."

Now it's 10:40 a.m. and we're still waiting for Channel 3 News to post.

Patience, everyone.

Besides, I've got an actual newspaper column to write. Distributed tomorrow morning on paper.

I know.... old-fashioned.


*Lunchtime Update

Still no Monday-Night 11 p.m. Channel 3 News script posted and it's 1 p.m. on Tuesday. Hope everyone's OK over there.

Not to worry. A blog reader had taped it! Played it to us over the phone.

Thank you, Alexander Graham Bell!

Ch 3 late-night co-anchor, golfer and snowboarder Roger Garrity told Vermont viewers/voters that a New York Times story had reported Tarrant's IDX 2005 sale to GE Healthcare for $1.2 BILLION had been “flagged for abnormal and suspicious trading."

"Roger announced that "an analysis done at the time said the price and number of shares traded in IDX stock jumped prior to the sale. Tarrant the former CEO and Chairman of IDX says the company took appropriate steps to keep the sale information confidential and secure."

Tarrant's on-camera comment:

If there really was a leak or there was some insider-trading, that would have rung like crazy and on September 29 when we announced the deal [at] $44-a-share, we were trading at $31. So if there was any leak or any inside trading, it would have gone a lot higher than $31.”

Uh, huh. After all, it was only only a measely 5 percent jump in price. Hey, what's 5 percent of a BILLION dollars anyway?

That sure puts the stock-fraud talk to bed.

Well done, Richie.

Ever think of running for office?

In Paraguay?


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About The Author

Peter Freyne

Peter Freyne

Peter Freyne, 1949-2009, wrote the weekly political column "Inside Track," which originated in the Vanguard Press in the mid 1980s; he brought it to Seven Days in 1995. He retired it shortly before his death in January, 2009. We all miss him.

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