NEW YORK (
Securities and Exchange Commission's
internal watchdog has launched an investigation into the timing of the agency's settlement of its civil fraud case against
The SEC's Office of Inspector General, which is headed by H. David Kotz, is probing the issue at the request of Rep. Darrell Issa (R, Calif.), according to
. The investigation was first reported by
As I pointed out
, the timing of both the announcement of the fraud charges and the settlement seemed to be closely coordinated with President Obama's push for financial reform legislation.
Issa raised similar concerns in a
and in a
. In the letter to Kotz, Issa also argues the SEC settled the case with Goldman "to avoid further criticism in the press." The letter states that settling a case on such grounds "is explicitly prohibited in regulations governing the Commission's behavior."
Goldman shares were changing hands at $146.37, shortly before the closing bell, a decline of 0.42%. The stock had traded higher for most of day, but dove shortly after the
report appeared, briefly sinking as low as $144.16.
Written by Dan Freed in New York
Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors, reporters and analysts from holding positions in any individual stocks.