Salman v. United States

Salman v. United States, 580 U.S. ___ (2016), was a United States Supreme Court case in which the Court held that gifts of confidential information without any compensation to relatives for the purposes of insider trading are a violation of securities laws.[1] The Court relied on its decision in Dirks v. Securities and Exchange Commission, 463 U.S. 646 (1983), which held that "that a tippee is exposed to liability for trading on inside information only if the tippee participates in a breach of the tipper's fiduciary duty."[2]

Salman v. United States
Seal of the United States Supreme Court
Argued October 5, 2016
Decided December 6, 2016
Full case nameBassam Yacoub Salman, Petitioner v. United States
Docket no.15–628
Citations580 U.S. ___ (more)
137 S. Ct. 420; 196 L. Ed. 2d 351
Opinion announcementOpinion announcement
Case history
PriorConviction affirmed, 792 F.3d 1087 (9th Cir. 2015)
Under Dirks, the jury could infer that the tipper here personally benefited from making a gift of confidential information to a trading relative.
Court membership
Chief Justice
John Roberts
Associate Justices
Anthony Kennedy · Clarence Thomas
Ruth Bader Ginsburg · Stephen Breyer
Samuel Alito · Sonia Sotomayor
Elena Kagan
Case opinion
MajorityAlito, joined by unanimous
Laws applied
Securities Exchange Act of 1934


A jury convicted Bassam Yacoub Salman of securities fraud and U.S. District Judge Edward M. Chen then denied Salman’s motion for a new trial. On July 6, 2015, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed the conviction, in which Judge Jed S. Rakoff was joined by Judges Morgan Christen and Paul J. Watford.[3]

On October 5, 2016, oral arguments were heard, where Deputy Solicitor General Michael Dreeben appeared for the government.[4]

Opinion of the CourtEdit

On December 6, 2016, the Supreme Court delivered judgment in favor of the government, voting unanimously to affirm the lower court. Justice Samuel Alito authored the opinion of the Court.[2][5]


  1. ^ Adam Liptak (2016-12-06). "Supreme Court Sides With Prosecutors in Insider Trading Case". The New York Times. Retrieved 2016-12-07.
  2. ^ a b Salman v. United States, No. 15–628, 580 U.S. ____ (2016).
  3. ^ United States v. Salman, 792 F.3d 1087 (9th Cir. 2015).
  4. ^ "Salman v. United States". Oyez Project. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  5. ^ The Supreme Court, 2016 Term — Leading Cases, 131 Harv. L. Rev. 383 (2017).

Further readingEdit

  • Fisch, Jill E. (2016). "Family Ties: Salman and the Scope of Insider Trading". Stanford Law Review Online. 69: 46. SSRN 2849164.

External linksEdit