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(New York Times) — When insider-trading scandals plagued the financial markets in the late 1980s, lawmakers created a bounty program for whistle-blowers, allowing regulators to reward tipsters who uncovered evidence of manipulation.  The effort largely failed, in part because the issue of whether to make a reward payment was left to the discretion of regulators. In 20 years, the program paid out a total of less than $160,000 to a handful of whistle-blowers.  Now, Congress and financial-market regulators are revamping a reward system for whistle-blowers, offering big payouts for tips about a host of securities and commodity law violations, to be doled out from a new $451 million fund.

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