Roaring Kitty In Hot Water With Regulators Amid GameStop Revival: Reports



A securities regulator for the U.S. state of Massachusetts is reportedly probing Keith Gill, the meme stock influencer better known online as Roaring Kitty or DeepFuckingValue.

Synonymous with the retail-led short squeeze that sent shares of GameStop soaring in 2021, Gill’s online return has reignited interest in the video game retailer. After posting to Twitter for the first time in years, the meme stock influencer has recently shifted his activity over to Reddit.

The existence of an investigation in Massachusetts was confirmed by Reuters after it was first reported by the Wall Street Journal. The latter publication on Monday also detailed a separate review of GameStop options trading activity by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Secretary of the Commonwealth for the Massachusetts Securities Division did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Decrypt.

Though Gill’s reemergence began with curated clips of movies that didn’t mention GameStop directly, the influencer hasn’t been beating around the bush on Reddit. On Sunday, he posted a screenshot of an ETrade account holding $210 million in GameStop shares and call options.

A subsequent post on Monday showed the purported holdings had increased by millions of dollars.

As of this writing, around 12,000 Reddit users were present in the r/Superstonk Reddit community where Gill had publicized his holdings. His most recent post on Reddit had garnered over 65,000 upvotes, many from GameStop fanatics.

Market manipulation concerns are among the main reasons why ETrade is currently considering dropping Gill from its retail trading platform, according to the Wall Street Journal. But on Twitter, some financial-market participants jumped to Gill’s defense.

Bobby Goodlatte, co-founder of the venture capital firm Form Capital, said that targeting Gill would be unfair. Though Gill’s actions feel like market manipulation, Goodlatte said Gill’s GameStop rhetoric isn’t far from Jim Cramer recommending a stock on CNBC’s “Mad Money.”

“The SEC should either allow all of it, or none of it,” he said, adding that the situation was also reminiscent of a hedge fund talking up the value of its investments on Twitter.

Notably, Gill’s behavior has raised regulatory eyebrows in the Bay State before. He was registered as a broker with a subsidiary of MassMutual, and the insurer agreed to pay a $4 million fine in 2021 to settle an inquiry over supervising Gill’s trading and social-media activity.

After surging this weekend on the back of Gill’s Reddit post, GameStop shares slumped 5% Tuesday to $26.50, following a 30% drop on Monday. Still, GameStop’s stock price has risen 62% over the past month from $16.31 amid renewed interest from retail traders.

Cramer himself has waded into the conversation around Gill’s online posts, positing on Twitter that there’s “nothing illegal if [he] buy[s] calls and shows them.” In a followup he said that regulators are looking out for an eventual sale and that anyone “can get long and loud.”

Edited by Ryan Ozawa.



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