The Tokyo Stock Exchange will inspect about 30 Japanese and foreign brokerages to determine how they guard market-sensitive information amid a jump in insider trading cases, a senior TSE official said.
The bourse plans to examine the handling of private client data by bankers and sales staff at securities firms from around October, said the official.
Japan's securities watchdog is aiming to restore market confidence after finding that employees at brokerages including Nomura Holdings Inc. leaked insider information on public stock offerings they managed. The TSE official declined to name which firms the exchange will review.
"The Tokyo Stock Exchange will collaborate with Japanese regulators to deter insider trading," Naoya Takahashi, a Tokyo- based spokesman at the exchange, said without elaborating. The TSE has 95 member brokerages.
The on-site examination of larger firms will take about 15 business days using 15 inspectors, the official said, declining to name the companies. The bourse plans to increase staff at its inspection department, the person said.
The TSE can fine its members as much as 500 million yen ($6.2 million) and suspend or terminate trading operations if they are found to have breached insider-trading rules.
Through the three years ended March 31, the exchange has found 16 instances of information mismanagement at brokerages, according to materials presented by the TSE to lawmakers discussing insider trading issues in Tokyo on June 22.
Japan's Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission and Yokohama city prosecutors said yesterday they are investigating Hiroyoshi Yoshioka, a former SMBC Nikko Securities Inc. executive, and three other people for suspected insider trading. SMBC Nikko is a brokerage arm of Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc., Japan's second-biggest bank by market value.
Nomura said earlier this month employees leaked non-public information that was used for insider trading in 2010, acknowledging for the first time the firm's role in cases surrounding share sales made by Mizuho Financial Group Inc, Inpex Corp and Tokyo Electric Power Co.
The SESC last month also found that an employee of JPMorgan Chase & Co. gave information on a 2010 offering by Nippon Sheet Glass Co., according to two people with knowledge of the matter. New York-based JPMorgan said on May 29 that it's "cooperating fully" with the authorities on the matter.