NASDAQ OMX Stockholm orders Medivir AB to pay a fine
Stockholm, December 9, 2013 – The Disciplinary Committee of NASDAQ OMX Stockholm AB (the "Exchange") has found that Medivir AB ("Medivir" or the "Company") has contravened the Exchange's Rulebook for Issuers (the "Rulebook") regarding disclosure rules and has therefore ordered Medivir to pay a fine of SEK 384,000 equal to twice the company's annual fee to the Exchange.
The case concerns Medivir's violation of items 3.1.1, 3.1.3 and 3.1.4 in the Rulebook and Chapter 10, Section 11 of Finansinspektionen's (FI) Regulations governing operations on trading venues FFFS 2007:17.
The background for this is that data pertaining to the results of a so-called phase II study for one of Medivir's products was leaked on March 4, 2013. The information was spread, when a participant at a research conference, which started on March 3 in Atlanta, US, took a photograph of material from Medivir and published it on Twitter.
During the morning on March 4, 2013, the share price of Medivir rose, whereupon the Exchange decided to stop trading in the Company's shares. Trading resumed the same day after publication of a press release by Medivir with information about the actual results of the study. The initial conclusion of the Disciplinary Committee was that neither the collaboration agreement between Medivir and another company regarding the product nor the confidentiality rules governing the conference released Medivir from its obligation to comply with the Rulebook.
The actual information comprised interim data from the first part of a phase II study that included, among other items, one of Medivir's products. This interim data did not display any sensational results and, accordingly, in the opinion of the Disciplinary Committee, Medivir could be deemed to have reason for making an initial assessment that the data did not comprise price-sensitive information. However, since confidential information was leaked and spread through such channels as Twitter, a level of drama and interest was created in the information, which did not necessarily have any rational connection based on the factual content of the information. The nature in which the information was spread is deemed to have impacted the share price.
According to the investigation, Medivir became aware of the leak as early as the morning of March 4, 2013. Once the information had been spread there was no leeway for the Company to defer publication. Accordingly, the Company should have published the information as soon as possible. It is the opinion of the Disciplinary Committee, that publication three hours later is unacceptable. Accordingly, Medivir is deemed to have acted in breach of items 3.1.1, 3.1.3 and 3.1.4 of the Rulebook.
Furthermore, the Disciplinary Committee has also found that the Company's press releases do not always meet the requirements under Chapter 10, Section 11 of FI's Regulations governing operations on trading venues (FFFS 2007:17), since the Company has not stated in its press releases when these have related to price-sensitive information pursuant to the Securities Market Act (2007:528).
A more detailed description of the case and the Disciplinary Committee's decision is published on:
Participating in the Committee's decision were former Supreme Court Justice Johan Munck, , Professor Emerita Madeleine Leijonhufvud, Company Director Stefan Erneholm, Company Director Anders Oscarsson and former Authorized Public Accountant Bo Magnusson.
About the Disciplinary Committee
The role of NASDAQ OMX Stockholm's Disciplinary Committee is to examine cases where Exchange Members or listed companies have breached the rules and regulations applying on the Exchange. If NASDAQ OMX Stockholm suspects that a member or a listed company has acted in breach of NASDAQ OMX Stockholm's rules and regulations, the matter is reported to the Disciplinary Committee. NASDAQ OMX Stockholm investigates and prosecutes the case and the Disciplinary Committee assesses the case and issues a ruling regarding possible sanctions. The sanctions possible for listed companies are a warning, a fine or delisting. The fines that may be imposed range from one to 15 annual fees. The sanctions possible for Exchange Members include a warning, a fine or debarment. The fines imposed by the Committee are not included in the Exchange's business but are attributed to a foundation supporting research in the securities market. The Disciplinary Committee's Chairman and Deputy Chairman must be lawyers with experience of serving as judges. At least two of the other members of the Committee must have in-depth insight into the workings of the securities market.
Members: Former Supreme Court Justice Johan Munck (Chairman), Supreme Court Justice Marianne Lundius (Deputy Chairman), Professor Emerita Madeleine Leijonhufvud, Company Director Stefan Erneholm and Company Director Anders Oscarsson. Deputies: Former Authorized Public Accountant Bo Magnusson, Lawyer Wilhelm Lüning, Company Director Jack Junel, Ragnar Boman (MBA) and Carl Johan Högbom (MBA).
Christina Malmberg Hägerstrand
+ 46 8 405 6583