TOKYO — A Japan Finance Ministry advisory panel agreed Tuesday to tighten up the country's laws against insider trading and make it a criminal offense.
Kazumoto Suzuki, director of the ministry's stock dealing inspection division, said agreement had been reached on recommendations for laws to stop stock trading based on non-public information.
One ministry official who asked not to be identified said that even if the panel's recommendations became law, the ministry lacked staff to police Japan's six stock exchanges effectively.
"We have 15 staff (members), at the most, available for checking up on insider trading. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has about 600," he said.