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Convicted Jefferies trader can stay out of prison, for now

There is hope for convicted traders, yet.

Because an appeals court predicts the conviction of an ex-Jefferies trader will be tossed out, he can stay out of federal prison during his appeal process.

In an unusual move, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals said on Friday that Jesse C. Litvak’s conviction is likely to be overturned. So he can stay at home – or wherever else he wants to be for the time being.

Earlier this year, Litvak was sentenced to two years in prison, after a Connecticut jury convicted him on 15 criminal counts, which include 10 counts of securities fraud.

The case was closely watched by traders and banks, The Wall Street Journal reported.

His sentence, unless it is reversed, also included him paying a $1.75 million fine. But The Journal reported prosecutors had tried to get Litvak sentenced to nine years in prison, and pay a much heftier $5 million fine.

The New York Times also reported he is the only person convicted of fraud over the government’s bailout of Wall Street.

In March, the former senior trader was found guilty of deceiving customers about the price of mortgage-backed securities. Litvak’s clients included those managing funds which were part of the Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Relief Program, The Times reported. The government therefore became a victim of his crime, prosecutors claimed.

But the appeals court recognized that his attorneys raised “a substantial question of law or fact likely to result in” a reversal, The Times said.

In July, Patrick Smith, who was one of the attorneys representing Litvak, commented to the media, “When the government asks for nine years, to leave with a sentence of only two years is definitely a cause for gratitude." The plea for leniency was helped by 114 letters sympathetic to Litvak that were presented to a federal judge.

Many Jumping Out of Investment Banking (eFinancialCareers)

A banker, who quit JPMorgan after ten years for a new career as a pastry chef, says investment banking is becoming unappealing to a lot of people in the industry.

Changing Careers in Your 40s? (eFinancialCareers)

Want to quit banking and do something else before you lose your job? Better talk to your spouse first.

Wall Street Types Opt for High Returns (NY Post)

Josh Gordon, the son of two private wealth managers, was planning to continue the family tradition until he started to look into the legal marijuana economy. The result is Bureau, which provides fashionable marijuana storage devices.

Former UBS Trader Tries to Get Case Tossed Out (WSJ)

Roger Darin, who formerly worked as a trader for UBS, is trying to get a U.S. case dismissed. He was charged with attempted manipulation of benchmark interest rates.

Bill Gross Seeks Only One Trader (Business Insider)

Bill Gross, now at Janus Capital Group, has asked for only one trader at his new job, Morningstar reported. Gross, who was until last week running the $222 billion Pimco Total Return Fund, also wants one client-facing person.

New Apps Help in Some Job Searches (Business Insider)

U.S. companies spend more than $120 billion a year on hiring and recruiting services, according to one report. It is little surprise that new job hunting apps are appearing – but so far they apparently are not being used that much for landing a high-paying gig on Wall Street.

South African Hedge Funds Skyrocket (FinAlternatives)

Assets that are managed by South African hedge funds jumped more than 27% in the year ending June 2014. The sector now manages about $4.8 billion, the Novare Investments South African Hedge Fund Survey 2014 reported.

Buzz Around the Office

College Raises Money by Providing Rides (MSN)

A state college located in Purchase, NY, down the road from an airport, which is located in a New York City suburb, is raising money by transporting passengers to and from the airport.

Purchase College runs a 24-hour valet parking and shuttle service for airline passengers using the Westchester County Airport.

The service charges $10 a day. That compares to the airport charging $28.80 for 24 hours’ worth of parking.

So far in 2014, the service has parked 12,600 cars. The service clears about $80,000 a year for the college, with money going for scholarships, capital improvements and grants.

Quote of the Day

“How many millionaires do you know who have become wealthy by investing in savings accounts? I rest my case.”

-     Robert G. Allen

AUTHOREd Silverstein Insider Comment

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