民选的肮脏交易者

发自芝加哥——试想现在是2010年,你是个选举上台的美国众议院议员,而且正在对即将通过的医疗改革法案进行激烈辩论。先前提交审议的某个公共保险选项将对私人保险公司构成竞争,而在众议院委员会会议上,你比其他人早一步得知该选项将被排除在议程之外。在知道这条消息将对医疗企业股价造成极大影响的情况下,你是否可以在消息公布之前买卖这些公司的股票?

在道德层面,上述例子跟传统企业内幕交易案件非常相似,但却没有相关法律可以禁止上述行为。作为美国政府立法机关的国会实际上让自己逍遥于内部交易法规的管辖之外。在众多联邦机构中,只有美国国会和最高法院的成员可以不受限制地利用非公开信息进行股票交易,而同样的行为放在其他政府机构雇员身上都是违法的。

而国会成员不仅可以合法地利用机密信息进行交易,他们也确实这样做了,连这些行为对自身名誉造成损害的在所不惜。美国电视栏目《60分钟时事杂志(60 minutes)》最近报道了数名国会议员利用议员身份所接触到的机密信息牟取私利。虽然这些机密信息和交易之间的关联难以确证——正如大多数内部交易案件一样,但这些行为发生的时机却非常可疑。

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