Madoff fund 'may never have traded'

19 January 2009

Bernard Madoff's investment fund may never have executed a single trade and detailed monthly statements of transactions sent to investors could have been an "elaborate mirage" to cover up his alleged $50 billion fraud, it has been claimed.

A spokesman for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority told the Financial Post that its records show "no evidence" of Mr Madoff's brokerage firm placing trades or generating customer statements.

That means the broker either went through other investment firms - which analysts consider unlikely - or Mr Madoff, the man who once chaired the Nasdaq stock exchange, never actually used his fund to trade securities, the newspaper said.

Mr Madoff is currently charged with running a Ponzi fraud, where he allegedly used the money coming in from new investors to pay out the promised returns to existing ones.

Prior to his arrest on December 11th, the broker is alleged to have told his sons that the business was "one big lie".

Mr Madoff is currently under house arrest awaiting trial for securities fraud.

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