The Hedge Fund Law Report

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By Topic: Form 13F

  • From Vol. 7 No.12 (Mar. 28, 2014)

    Greenlight Capital Action against Seeking Alpha Illustrates the Benefits and Limitations of Obtaining Confidential Treatment of Quarterly Reports on Form 13F

    David Einhorn’s hedge fund management company, Greenlight Capital, Inc. (Greenlight), recently commenced an action in the New York State Supreme Court, New York County (Court), against Seeking Alpha, Inc. (SA), to discover the name of an anonymous blogger who allegedly revealed Greenlight’s position in Micron Technologies (Micron).  In July 2013, Greenlight quietly began to accumulate a position in Micron.  To that end, it requested confidential treatment of that position in the next periodic report on Form 13F that it was obligated to file with the SEC.  However, in November 2013, an anonymous contributor to SA’s website,, allegedly revealed Greenlight’s investment in Micron.  Greenlight claimed that that information was revealed in breach of a duty of confidentiality and sought permission from the Court to (1) force SA to provide it with the contributor’s identity and contact information and (2) serve pre-action discovery demands on SA in order to obtain that information and any of the contributor’s archived postings on that site.  On March 24, Greenlight filed a Notice of Discontinuance of that lawsuit.  On the same day, The New York Times reported that Greenlight had learned the identity of the contributor; a spokesman for SA told The Times that SA did not reveal the contributor’s name to Greenlight.  This article first describes the factual background and legal claims in Greenlight’s now discontinued action against SA.  This article then summarizes authority on obtaining confidential treatment of Form 13F information, including the statutory and regulatory context, guidance from the SEC’s Division of Investment Management, law firm insight and relevant litigation.

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