False: Hindenburg has been banned from publishing research on U.S.-listed companies due to their previous controversial reports.

By: Annet Preethi Furtado
February 9 2023

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False: Hindenburg has been banned from publishing research on U.S.-listed companies due to their previous controversial reports.


The Verdict False

Hindenburg Research is being investigated in the U.S. for its trade practices, but it has not been banned from publishing its research on U.S. firms.

Claim ID e487f6b0


On January 24, 2023, Hindenburg Research, a company that does forensic financial research on what it sees as "man-made disasters" and engages in activist short-selling, published research findings accusing the Adani Group of stock price manipulations and malpractices throughout several decades. Though the Adani Group issued a statement calling the results "baseless," the company's shares have plummeted since the publication of the Hindenburg report. Reuters reported that the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) is examining the $86 billion stock market decline and looking into the allegations made by Hindenburg. As a result of Hindenburg's report, Gautam Adani has fallen from the third position to the 15th position on Forbes' billionaire list. Amid the report's fallout, the Adani corporation canceled its follow-on public offering (FPO), which opened on January 27, and said it would refund investors.

In light of these developments, several social media users have been sharing claims about Hindenburg on Twitter under the hashtags "Hindenburg Exposed" and ''Hindenburg Report.'' Numerous posts with these hashtags claimed that the research firm was banned in the U.S. One such Twitter post claimed that due to Hindenburg's controversial findings in the past, U.S. market regulators had forbidden Hindenburg from writing any reports on any U.S.-listed companies, making reference to a Reuters report by Alison Frankel as evidence of the claim. The post also claimed that Hindenberg is currently attempting to generate revenue by short-selling on Indian companies owing to the U.S. restrictions.

In Fact

Hindenburg Research is permitted to publish its findings on U.S. companies even though there has been an investigation into the firm over potentially illegal trade practices. Since 2021, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has assessed dozens of prominent businesses, including Hindenburg Research, for potentially unlawful trading tactics. According to a Forbes report and a Bloomberg Law report from February 2022, Hindenburg Research and its founder Nate Anderson featured in the DOJ's information requests in 2021 as part of a probe. However, Hindenburg Research has not been implicated or charged with any crime and has not been banned from reporting on U.S.-listed companies.

A tweet making this claim refers to a Reuters article by Alison Frankel. In this article, Frankel spoke about the two unsuccessful litigation attempts against Hindenburg in the U.S., seemingly implying that Adani and other Hindenburg opponents should think twice before suing Hindenburg in the U.S. Frankel also noted that the research company had rarely been sued in the U.S. However, the article does not mention that the U.S. market regulators had prohibited Hindenburg from releasing its research on American-listed firms due to its history of publishing controversial claims.

The post also claimed that Hindenburg Research is actively attempting to make money by short betting on Indian companies over its published reports. A short bet is a way for someone to profit if the price of shares falls. Hindenburg revealed in its report that it had taken a short position on Adani Group companies through U.S. bonds and other investments that trade outside of India. Though it is true that Hindenburg stands to profit from the current situation, the argument that its "ban" in the U.S. caused the research firm to publish assessments on Indian companies is false. Twitter posts under the hashtag "Adani Enterprises" also claimed that Hindenburg was the subject of three American criminal investigations and that its bank accounts had been frozen due to fraud-related operations. However, no reports by reputed media outlets support these claims. The only two lawsuits filed against Hinderburg Research, one by China-based real estate company Yangtze River Port and Logistics Ltd and the other by Bollywood film studio Eros International Plc, were for defamation, and they weren't criminal investigations.

Anderson himself also took to Twitter to clear the air about the claims about Hindenburg floating around. On February 9, he shared a report by The Wire debunking claims about the firm and added that Hindenburg had never been banned by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), responding to another claim being circulated. He also wrote that the firm had never had its bank accounts seized and said that not being allowed to publish reports on NYSE-listed companies "isn't a thing." Further, he said that the firm is not under investigation.

The Verdict

The U.S. Department of Justice has been probing Hindenburg Research over their potentially unlawful trading practices. However, there is no ban on Hindenburg publishing reports about U.S.-listed entities. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.

(Note: This story has been updated to reflect a tweet by Nathan Anderson dated February 9, 2023, in which he refuted claims about Hindenburg Research circulating on social media.)

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