HK regulator orders two brokerages to freeze client accounts linked to suspected market manipulation

Maria Nikolova

Gary Cheng Securities Limited and Zhongcai Securities Limited have been prohibited from dealing with or processing certain assets held in five trading accounts.

Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) today announces that it has issued restriction notices to two brokerages – Gary Cheng Securities Limited (GCSL) and Zhongcai Securities Limited (ZSL).

The notices prohibit the brokerages from dealing with or processing certain assets held in five trading accounts, which are related to suspected market manipulation in late April 2020 in the shares of a company listed on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited.

The restriction notices prohibit them, without the SFC’s prior written consent, from disposing of or dealing with, or assisting, counselling or procuring another person to dispose of or deal with, any assets in any way in the trading accounts including:

  1. entering into transactions in respect of any securities; and/or

  2. processing any withdrawals or transfers of securities and/or cash or any transfers of money arising from the disposal of securities; and/or

  3. disposing of or dealing with any securities and/or cash on the instructions of any authorized person of the accounts or any person acting on their behalf.

The brokers are also required to notify the SFC if they receive any of these instructions.

The regulator says it considers that the issue of the restriction notices is desirable in the interest of the investing public and in the public interest. The SFC’s investigation into this matter is continuing.

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