Ivan Boesky

DEFINITION of 'Ivan Boesky'

An American stock trader known for his role in a 1986 Wall Street scandal. Ivan Frederick Boesky was born on March 6, 1937, and after graduating from the Michigan State University College of Law, ended up on Wall Street. He published "Merger Mania" in 1985, and focused on trading stock in companies that were set for takeovers. Shortly thereafter, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged Boesky with illegal stock manipulation based on insider information.


Boesky made a plea bargain, cooperating with the SEC by informing on some of his tipsters, including junk bond king Michael Milken. Boesky was sentenced to 3.5 years at Lompoc Federal Prison Camp in California, for which he served two years. In addition, he was fined $100 million and barred from working in securities for the rest of his life.