Morgan Stanley on Monday was fined $5 million by the Massachusetts Securities Division for the "improper influence" bankers allegedly had over its research analysts in the run-up and during the first day of trading in Facebook's initial public offering on May 17, 2012. The company has agreed to a consent order with the Massachusetts government, but has not admitted any fault. The full consent order explains how how bankers at Morgan Stanley, Facebook's lead underwriter for the IPO, sought revised information from Facebook on its revenue projections (lower than earlier reported) in order to offer investors updated guidance "without creating the appearance of such," as one email from a banker was quoted. These and other actions violated an earlier 2003 settlement between Morgan Stanley and Massachusetts. Read the full consent order here (PDF).
The news was originally broken Monday by CNBC on Twitter.