A Greek prosecutor filed misdemeanor charges against Morgan Stanley (MS) alleging insider trading over National Bank of Greece SA’s failed attempt to acquire Alpha Bank (ALPHA) SA, an official in the prosecutor’s office said.
The prosecutor began a probe last year after the Greek markets watchdog looked into reports that New York-based Morgan Stanley allegedly used privileged information from its role as an adviser to National Bank to increase its stake in Alpha Bank before the offer, said the official, who asked not to be identified.
Shares in Alpha Bank gained in the days after National Bank made the 3 billion-euro ($3.7 billion) offer on Feb. 18, 2011, an offer that Alpha’s board voted to reject. Both Alpha and National Bank of Greece are based in Athens.
On March 14, 2011, Alpha said in a stock exchange filing that Morgan Stanley had a stake of 5.1 percent in the company.
Michael Wang, a Morgan Stanley spokesman in London, declined to comment.
The Associated Press reported the charges yesterday.
To contact the reporter on this story: Marcus Bensasson in Athens at email@example.com
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Frank Connelly at firstname.lastname@example.org;