Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
October 4, 2023

Is KPMG Secretly Worried About This Phil Mickelson Insider Trading Situation?

There is an interesting article in BloombergBusinessweek today about some of Phil Mickelson's sponsors turning their backs on him due to Phil's insider trading probe.

As we already know, KPMG has expressed their utmost faith and support for Phil, saying "We have had a very strong relationship with Phil for a number of years, and we fully expect it to continue. We have great respect for him.”

For Phil Mickelson, it may not be that easy:

“Insider trading is about cheating, and golf is about not cheating,” said Atlanta-based sports attorney David Cornwell, who has defended athletes including baseball players Alex Rodriguez and Ryan Braun, and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger of the Pittsburgh Steelers, in separate scandals.

Another big sponsor, Callaway, echoes KPMG's statement:

“We have had a long-standing partnership with Phil and value our relationship with him,” Carlsbad, California-based Callaway said in a statement. “He has always acted with the utmost professionalism and integrity in our dealings with him.”

Because the issue involves investing and not golf, Callaway doesn’t stand to suffer much damage, Casey Alexander, a New York-based analyst at Gilford Securities Inc., said in a telephone interview.

“Callaway would stick behind him until they slammed the jail cell door shut,” Alexander said. “There’s such a degree of public goodwill towards Phil, people will say he’s innocent until proven guilty.”

Last I checked, Casey Alexander, New York-based analyst at Gilford Securities, Phil is innocent until proven guilty regardless of his so-called "public goodwill," but thanks for that insight.

Anyhoo, sports attorney David Cornwell is a tad skeptical Phil's big sponsors are as supportive behind the scenes as their public statements make it appear:

“Despite what Barclays and KPMG may say, you’ve got to know that they are watching this thing closely,” Cornwell said. “For the financial services companies, that’s just a blemish they can’t afford to have.”

Phil earns more than $30 million a year in sponsorships, so this naturally begs the question why a squeaky clean, trustworthy dude like Lefty would profit from information he knew was non-public and material to the company in question.

As for his reputation, I don't think he's all that worried. Even in the age of villifying banksters and crooked politicians, and even without any proof Phil did anything wrong, some have even gone so far as to call him a hero. A hero! Lord knows KPMG could use more of those.

Latest Accounting Jobs--Apply Now:

Have something to add to this story? Give us a shout by email, Twitter, or text/call the tipline at 202-505-8885. As always, all tips are anonymous.

Comments are closed.

Related articles

drinks on the bar

Who’s Putting Roofies in the Drinks at KPMG In-Office Get Togethers?

This post is not a joke about partners slipping Moloko into the Kool-Aid, someone is actually spiking drinks at KPMG New Zealand. The most disturbing part, putting aside the roofies which are plenty disturbing themselves, is that this likely happened on KPMG premises. For two months in a row, “grubby little cowards” have drugged drinks […]

Put a gear stick into R position, (Reverse).

Turns Out the Secret PCAOB Inspection List Isn’t Intangible Property for the Purposes of Wire Fraud After All

Financial Times reported today that two of the people in the middle of KPMG’s 2018 PCAOB inspection cheating scandal (extensive write-up here if you’ve been under a rock for approximately five years) are likely limping away scot-free minus any Google searches of their name being forever dominated by stories about cheating audit inspections. Two people […]