DJs directors off the hook


davidjonessaThe Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has dropped a share purchase investigation into two David Jones directors.

The country’s independent corporate regulator began investigating the department store’s directors following a large trade in October.

Non-executive directors Steven Vamos and Leigh Clapham bought a total of 32,500 shares in David Jones on October 29.

Three days later, the listed retailer’s quarter sales increase announcement led to a surged in shares of almost seven per cent.

ASIC began investigating the directors’ purchases in November following public pressure and allegations of insider trading.

The regulator has now ended its investigation after failing to finding sufficient evidence that the duo acted illegally.

The Australian is reporting that the investigation involved tests of the price sensitivity of the sales announcement, and interviews with key stakeholders.

Peter Mason, chairman of David Jones, apologised to shareholders in November following public interest in the case.

“I unreservedly apologise to the company and all our shareholders for the concerns that have been raised on this matter,” he told the company’s annual general meeting.

“Your board is committed to the highest standards of corporate governance and therefore took the decision to raise this matter proactively with ASIC following media comment.”

Mason said the two directors were “motivated by a wish to show support for the company”.

You have 7 articles remaining. Unlock 15 free articles a month, it’s free.