chris murphy: im no fool

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    from Crikey

    Chris Murphy: "I'm no fool"

    Adam Schwab writes:

    The man who some blame for the Opes Prime collapse, Sydney lawyer turned day-trader, Chris Murphy, took issue with an article regarding his woes on Friday. Shortly after the article appeared, Murphy claimed:
    While I consider my remedies you should consider speaking to people you write about or do you fear the truth? I have never called myself a "gun" trader. I have never said to anyone I have assets of $40,000 [sic]. Kerry Packer did not call me a "market genius" but rather said "You know nothing about markets. You've got big balls and you are lucky". I was once lucky but things change and I can handle it.
    Oh yes, in addition I have never said my accounts did not exceed their margins. I said that I did not get "margin calls" .
    The fool here Mr Schwab is your self. I am frank and I'm no fool. The margin calls did not come when the market price of my shares exceeded my equity. Why? You'll have to ask someone else that. I can't help you. Try picking up the telephone, other journalists aren't phobic about it! Perhaps you should leave this stuff to real journalists [sic] with proper jobs who do not avoid their subjects for fear the truth will ruin a mocking article.

    Murphy did make two valid points. First, the claim that Murphy had only $40,000 was sourced from another journalist. If that statement is incorrect (Crikey contacted Murphy today but he was not in his legal office and did not reply), Crikey unreservedly apologises to Murphy for the allegation.
    Second, the alleged Kerry Packer statement was sourced from the Daily Telegraph and The Australian. It has since become clear that while Packer did make the statement, he also made the subsequent comments noted by Murphy. Therefore, we apologise unreservedly to Mr Murphy for the statement.
    However, Murphy’s claim that he "never said [his] accounts did not exceed their margins" is legal semantics from one of the premier criminal lawyers in the country. While it is accepted that Murphy never claimed his accounts did not exceed their margin – that is not a relevant factor (rather, it was a contextual implication).
    The point being made was even if he wasn’t margin called by Opes or ANZ, an experienced trader like Murphy should have been aware that his account had slipped into negative equity (given he was operating with more than 90 percent borrowed money). Using a criminal law term, Murphy appears to have exhibited "willful blindness" towards his equity position.
    Murphy then claimed that "the fool here Mr Schwab is your self. I am frank and I'm no fool." Perhaps that is so, however, it is Murphy who has allegedly lost more than $100 million of other people’s money trading shares.
    Further, one of Murphy’s failed trades was on struggling retailer and pharmaceutical wholesaler, API. Perhaps Murphy shouldn’t have cancelled his Crikey subscription, because last year Crikey published several articles (here and here) which cast doubt over API’s financial position. Since the original article was written, API shares dropped by more than 30 percent.
    Murphy finally claimed that "I was once lucky but things change and I can handle it." That’s nice for Chris. However, we wonder how other Opes clients, including the 67-year-old who lost his livelihood of $1.45 million, or Gavin Caudle, who lost $2.7 million of his “life savings from hard work over the last 20 years” are handling it.
    Send your tips to [email protected], submit them anonymously here or SMS tips and photos to 0427 TIP OFF.
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