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    MF Global Trustee Seeks Court Permission to Repay Creditors

    MF Global Inc. wants court approval to pay $461 million owed to its creditors, the second such payment now that it has paid back most of its customers. In a Wednesday filing with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York, trustee James W. Giddens said he wanted to distribute the cash to unsecured creditors, who have already received $518.7 million. The latest distribution would bring unsecured creditors’ payout to 72% of what Mr. Giddens has agreed to pay. MF Global’s brokerage and commodity customers have already received 100% of the $6.7 billion they were owed. More in the Wall Street Journal here.

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    Madoff Trustee Strikes $93 Million Deal with Feeder Fund

    A fund that invested exclusively in Bernard Madoff’s massive Ponzi scheme has struck a deal that frees up $93 million to pay back victims of the fraud. Irving Picard, the official tasked with liquidating Mr. Madoff’s defunct firm, said in a Monday court filing that Defender Limited and related entities have agreed to return $93 million they received from investing with Mr. Madoff. Under the terms of the deal, the amount will be withheld from a $522.8 million recovery that Defender is in line to receive for money it lost from the fraud. The deal is one of several Mr. Picard has struck with so-called feeder funds, which pooled investors’ cash and then funneled the money to Mr. Madoff. Phony returns were later paid out to the feeder funds, which then distributed the money among their individual investors. More in the Wall Street Journal here.

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    Compromise on insurer payments draws objections

    NEW YORK — The trustee finding money for victims of Bernard Madoff’s epic fraud asked the US Supreme Court on Tuesday to overturn a court ruling that he said may prevent the recovery of nearly $4 billion, may reward those who unwittingly profited from the Ponzi scheme at the expense of those who did not, and may have far-reaching effects for future fraud victims. Lawyers for the trustee, Irving Picard, said the December ruling by the Second US Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan threatens a century’s worth of law that steered how courts respond to the legal aftermath of Ponzi schemes. ‘‘Denying review would only perpetuate confusion and uncertainty at a time when investors can afford neither,’’ the legal papers said, adding that the 2008 financial crisis revealed investors are victims of a remarkable number of financial frauds. More on Boston.com here.

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    SIFMA claims White House figures on DOL rule flawed

    The White House is using flawed methodology to assert that abusive trading practices are costing U.S. investors up to $17 billion a year in retirement savings, according to a report released Monday by a Wall Street group that opposes toughening rules on brokers. The 18-page report commissioned by the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association said the estimate that President Barack Obama’s administration is using is “simplistic” and isn’t supported by academic literature. More on Investment News here.

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    S.E.C. Wants the Sinners to Own Up

    For decades, the Securities and Exchange Commission has allowed companies and individuals to make settlements without admitting any wrongdoing. Even a company committing an egregious sin that cost investors millions of dollars could walk away from the proceedings without ever acknowledging its role. But in mid-2013 the agency declared that it was doing an about-face. “Heightened accountability or acceptance of responsibility through the defendant’s admission of misconduct may be appropriate, even if it does not allow us to achieve a prompt resolution,” Andrew Ceresney, the S.E.C.’s head of enforcement, said in a June 2013 email to his lieutenants. More in the New York Times here.

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