OLD Media Moves

Gradient Analytics responds to 60 Minutes piece

March 29, 2006

Gradient Analytics is the stock research firm that has been under investigation by the SEC and criticism from others because of its research and how that research was shared with some business journalists. Earlier this week, the New York Post and Wall Street Journal reported that the SEC requested the firm’s e-mail and telephone communications with eight reporters.

Now, Gradient has put out a press release criticizing a recent piece on the CBS news magazine show “60 Minutes,” saying that the story didn’t present all of the facts.

The statement, in part, reads, “The analysts (current and former) are the ones who did the work. To a person, these analysts adamantly deny that any report was anything other than their independent analytical work. Gradient did not collude with asset managers or journalists to drive down security prices nor did Gradient accept ‘ghost written’ reports. Anyone who says so is simply wrong.”

Also, in its press release, it listed 10 points that it said “60 Minutes” didn’t have time to report. Among them were:

4. BiovailÁ-?s stock began to fall when the Wall Street Journal reported unethical marketing practices by Biovail, when Biovail started reporting disappointing earnings, when Biovail announced it was under investigation by the SEC in the United States and Canada and when a competitor received tentative approval for a drug.

5. Gradient did not and does not “widely disseminate” its reports. When Gradient released the most substantive and detailed Biovail reports, only about 33 clients subscribed to its service. Gradient did not engage in a campaign to disseminate its Biovail reports to journalists or to any other analysts beyond its limited set of subscribers.

Read the press release here.

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