Massachusetts Investigates GameStop Trades of ‘Roaring Kitty’

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Massachusetts securities regulators are investigating the trading activities of Keith Gill, known as the influential figure “Roaring Kitty” during the 2021 meme stock frenzy involving GameStop.

A spokesperson for Massachusetts Secretary of State Bill Galvin, the state’s top securities regulator, confirmed the probe into Gill’s activities but declined to provide further details.

The Wall Street Journal first disclosed the investigation.

GameStop’s shares surged recently after “Roaring Kitty” reappeared on Reddit, posting about a $116 million investment in the struggling video game retailer.

As of 10:45 a.m. ET (1445 GMT), the shares had dropped approximately 5%.

The Reddit post, the account’s first in three years, suggested that Gill might be sitting on significant unrealized profits from his GameStop options.

Reuters could not independently verify whether Gill made the Reddit post or the authenticity of the disclosed positions.

Attempts to reach Gill for comment were unsuccessful. It’s important to note that regulatory inquiries and investigations do not necessarily imply wrongdoing and often do not lead to enforcement actions.

Galvin had previously investigated Gill’s activities in 2021 but closed the case after reaching a settlement with Gill’s former employer MassMutual, citing inadequate supervision of his activities, according to the spokesperson who spoke to Reuters last month.

Screenshots of Gill’s bullish GameStop trades on Reddit in 2021 triggered a surge in interest for “meme stocks” – companies often with weak fundamentals that gained popularity through social media buzz among retail traders.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also investigated the meme stock phenomenon of 2021, concluding that market systems generally functioned well and finding no evidence supporting retail investors’ claims that short sellers fueled the frenzy.

The Wall Street Journal additionally reported that the SEC is examining options trading in GameStop. A spokesperson for the SEC declined to confirm or comment.

(Reporting by Chris Prentice; additional reporting by Nate Raymond; editing by Michelle Price and Marguerita Choy)

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