A man who became a key player in frenzied trading of GameStop shares last month has been hit with a class action lawsuit.
Keith Gill, known as ‘Roaring Kitty’ on YouTube, allegedly dupped retail investors into buying inflated stocks while hiding his sophisticated financial background.
Gill has downplayed his impact and rebutted claims he violated any laws.
Separately, he will testify on Thursday to Congress about the “Reddit rally”.
“The idea that I used social media to promote GameStop stock to unwitting investors is preposterous,” Gill said in the prepared testimony.
“I was abundantly clear that my channel was for educational purposes only, and that my aggressive style of investing was unlikely to be suitable for most folks checking out the channel.”
Gill allegedly bought GameStop shares for $5 and then used social media to drive shares from around $20 in early January to more than $400 in just two weeks.
This violated securities laws against manipulating the market, according to the lawsuit filed by Christian Lovin, a Washington state resident who bought GameStop stock options.
Gill said he used publicly available information to determine GameStop was undervalued, and shared this view with a “tiny” following on social media ahead of January’s huge price surge.
The lawsuit also names as defendants Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co and its subsidiary MML Investors Services, which employed Gill until 28 January.
The company told Massachusetts regulators it was unaware of Gill’s outside activities.