Market Overview

Daniel's Name is Mudd

The CEO of Fortress Investment Group (NYSE: FIG), Daniel Mudd, is to take a leave of absence from the head of the company.

According to Business Insider, the move comes hot on the heels of civil suits by the Securities Exchange Commission that allege “that Mudd and other Fannie and Freddie execs made false and misleading credit risk disclosures regarding risky mortgage loans.”

“I have requested a leave of absence from my position as chief executive officer to ensure that any time or attention I need to focus on matters outside of Fortress will not affect the business or operations of the company,” Mudd said in a statement.

While Mudd is away from his post, Fortress Principal and co-founder Randal Nardone will take the reins. Meanwhile, Mudd will fight the allegation, which he firmly denies.

"The SEC is wrong, and I look forward to a court where fairness and reason — not politics — is the standard for justice," Mudd said on Friday.

Perhaps reflecting the upheaval, shares of Fortress are down 2 percent. If you would like to be alerted to Fortress updates as they come out in real-time, signup for a free trial of Benzinga Pro's premium news service.


ACTION ITEMS:

Bullish:
Traders who believe that Fortress will get through these allegations might want to consider the following trades:
  • FIG has a strong market cap of 1.67 billion. It hasn't had the best year, but it still has to be taken seriously.
Bearish:
Traders who believe that this could see FIG tank may consider alternative positions:
  • Och-Ziff Capital (NYSE: OZM) just seems to be in a far healthier position, as it…
  • Deerfield Capital (NYSE: DFR), with its 96.43 million market cap and 4.84 percent change.
Neither Benzinga nor its staff recommend that you buy, sell, or hold any security. We do not offer investment advice, personalized or otherwise. Benzinga recommends that you conduct your own due diligence and consult a certified financial professional for personalized advice about your financial situation.

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