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"Pump & Dump" Spam

This is a common scam where spam emails hype shares of a little known company, of which the spammer has previously aquired stock. When sufficient people fall for the scam and start placing buy orders, the market value of the stock rises and the spammer can sell at a profit. Here is some more information about this type of fraud:

Pump&Dump.con: Tips for Avoiding Stock Scams on the Internet (SEC)
Pump'n'dump spam? Hooray! (CNN)
Sharp Rise in Pump-And-Dump Spam Scams
How scamsters 'pump and dump' victims
Spam-contaminated Stocks
Pump & Dump

Share price manipulations can be reported to which investigates such cases. There have been a number of successful prosecutions.

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