SEC investigating fake Steve Jobs heart attack story

SEC investigating fake Steve Jobs heart attack story

Summary: A fake story that appeared on CNN's iReport site which claimed that Apple CEO Steve Jobs had suffered a heart attack is being investigated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

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TOPICS: Apple, Banking
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A fake story that appeared on CNN's iReport site which claimed that Apple CEO Steve Jobs had suffered a heart attack is being investigated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The agency's enforcement unit is trying to determine whether the iReport.com posting was intended to push down the company's stock price. CNN is cooperating with the SEC's probe, network spokeswoman Jennifer Martin said. The report is "not true," Apple spokesman Steve Dowling said in an interview.

I can't say that this investigation is unexpected. I came across the story very early on in the day on Friday (via Digg) and after about 10 minutes worth of digging around was certain that it was false (although at least one site took it on face value), but the effect on Apple's stock price was almost immediate.

Apple stock recovered but later fell again and ended the day at under $100 a share:

But these sudden falls in stock price based on speculation and rumor show that Apple is at present very vulnerable, especially when it comes to Steve Jobs and his health. Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, senior associate dean at Yale University's School of Management had this to say to Bloomberg:

"Leaving it to rumor and speculation is reckless," said Sonnenfeld, who has personally owned Apple shares since 1997, the year Jobs returned as CEO. "If he is healthy, they should say so. If he's not, we should know that too."

While it's true that no stock is a safe bet under the current economic conditions, Apple stock seems to be particularly vulnerable to any bad news, and especially so if that relates to Jobs.

Thoughts?

Topics: Apple, Banking

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15 comments
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  • Artificial vulnerability

    "...these sudden falls in stock price based on speculation and rumor show that Apple is at present very vulnerable, especially when it comes to Steve Jobs and his health."

    I just like to point out that the perceived vulnerability was created mostly by persistent feed of rumours and speculations. Yes, Jobs has health problems, but the recent succession of mistakes, hoaxes and unfounded reports are just a little bit too much to take. Liberation's benzene shot in the dark, Bloomberg's obituary and now CNN. All in a few weeks.

    Is it a campaign? Is it simply incredible professional misconduct on part of the said media? Or is it just OK and ethical now to kick Apple by whatever means are available - including lies?
    kitko
    • Arn't there some truth in rumors?

      No fire, no smoke!
      joemartn
      • And then there's the smoke bomb.

        Fire implies smoke. But this does not mean that smoke necessarily implies fire.
        Zogg
      • Wow, a new low in stupid postings

        Rumors are stories spread by hearsay WITHOUT regard for whether they are true or not.

        The very notion that something must have an element of truth just because someone somewhere might or might not have suggested it as a possibility is just plain stupid.

        Blindingly, achingly stupid.

        Stupid far beyond the normal limits of stupidity.

        We're talking stupid on a truly vast and overwhelming scale.

        Picture a vast herd of Stupidolopes, millions strong, stampeding across prairies of ignorance, until they plunge off the liff into the Canyon of Stupidity.

        In short, it's pretty much impossible to make a more stupid claim than this.
        bmerc
        • Yeah - but the vast herd of Stupidolopes is why Bush got elected...Twice

          So never underestimate how stupid so-called "high-fliers" in the stock market are....
          drprodny
          • Obama's Top finance guys are former CEO & CFO's of Fannie and Lehman Bros

            All forced to resign with HUGE golden, parachutes after bilking us for millions. Are they now using thier stolen millions to support the Democratic Presidential campaign? Or just to buy spots in obama's cabinet?

            JIM JOHNSON? Johnson hired as a Senior Obama Finance Advisor and was selected to run Obama's Vice Presidential Search Committee
            CEO FANNIE,+ Lehman Exec, $28 Million Golden Parachute.

            FRANKLIN RAINES? Raines works for the Obama Campaign as Chief Economic Advisor
            CEO FANNIE $240 Million Golden Parachute.

            TIM HOWARD? Howard is also a Chief Economic Advisor to Obama
            CFO FANNIE, $50 Million Golden Parachute.

            Google them, these left wingnuts stole our retirements years ago, we're just now finding out. Just who we need running the countries finances. Brilliant thieves. Right or Left, anyone involved with "C*O" in thier title needs to go down. Heck, China executes them.

            ENRON TIMES 100?, anyone?, anyone?
            invmgr@...
    • Apple is never just Apple

      The press either loves Apple or they hate Apple. At any
      rate Apple is always a target for FUD, be it the stock
      market or bogus declarations that OSX is less secure than
      Windows, which is total hogwash. People who use Apple
      products love Apple and a few that don't use Apple
      products bash Apple at every chance. The press will report
      anything if it stirs people up, including and especially
      kicking Apple. As a company, at least since Jobs took over,
      Apple has flourished, and is probably financially one of the
      strongest high tech companies around with very little debt
      and a lot of cash assets. Apple's stock prices are more
      affected rumor than other tech companies, but day in and
      day out over the long haul Apple stock will be strong. Just
      think if you had bought Apple stock when it was $12 a
      share.
      MacGeek2121
  • RE: SEC investigating fake Steve Jobs heart attack story

    Dunno.

    It all smacks of Industrial Terrorism.
    jgpmolloy
  • 1st Tweets

    1st Tweets ~ Steve Jobs Heart Attack ~ Timeline/Chart...
    http://tweetip.us/lkq3e
    tweetip
  • SEC becomes mega-Capitalist's KGB

    Thou shalt not speak should thy words affect thy greedy pig trough.

    Nuff sed.
    fr0thy2
    • Agreed.

      ^
      rlorenz
    • The SEC is a bunch of pathetic incompetent

      morons. The cow is long gone and they are trying to close the barn door.
      Their stupidity in doing nothing about leveraged mortgage securities and allowing the short sale rule to change has contributed to a economic meltdown. Now their enforcement arm wants to investigate a bogus story, about Steve Jobs typical. If there was a market manipulation motive behind it they should investigate it.
      More likely it was a incompetent reporter at CNN didn't do their homework.
      marks055@...
      • Is SEC the fallguy?

        Should the blame go to fed chair, president, and congress?
        joemartn
  • look at a 5 year APPL chart

    October 6th 2003 appl 10.84
    October 3rd 2008 appl 97.70
    Not bad!
    Look at the long term Apple has outperformed for years.
    I think I'll buy some next week.
    Stocks are long term investments I think Apple is one of Americas greatest companies, (even though I prefer Windows).
    marks055@...
  • Pump and dump

    This kind of garbage has been happening for far too long now. There are people who put together a boiler room of bloggers to talk smack for the sole purpose of bringing down the stock price so that they can either buy at a better price and then pump it up or exercise options they bought against it.
    Typically this happens in the "penny stocks". Those that are valued under $5.00 per share. However it has come in vouge to try and use this tactic in the larger arena.
    What these people are doing is dangerous to us all and must be stopped. Look at what "legitimate" oil speculators had done in just the past 8 months. I hope this rumor monger goes down hard.
    charlesurrea