The Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday shut down trading in four companies, including two Southland-based firms, that claimed to have developed products related to the Ebola virus.
The commission suspended trading for Wholehealth Products Inc. of Anaheim, which issued a news release Nov. 3 on its PCR Rapid Ebola Test, which the company said can reveal a result in hours as opposed the process which now takes days, and Monrovia-based Immunotech Laboratories Inc.
SEC officials said the suspension was due to a lack of publicly available information about the companies.
The commission also warned investors of companies that capitalize on topics that dominate news reports such as Ebola.
“We move quickly to protect investors when we see thinly traded stocks being promoted with questionable information that make them ripe for pump-and- dump schemes,” said Elisha Frank, co-chair of the commission’s Microcap Fraud Task Force.
“Fraudsters are constantly exploiting issues of public concern to tout a penny stock companies supposedly in the business of addressing the latest crisis,” Frank said.
A message left with Wholehealth Products was not immediately returned.
The commission also suspended trading for Bravo Enterprises Ltd. of Patchogue, New York, and Toronto-based Myriad Interactive Media Inc.
— City News Service