The Securities and Exchange Commission, Federal Bureau of Investigation and the office of Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara are readying insider-trading charges against numerous financial professionals.

The targets of the three-years-in-the-making civil and criminal probes range from consultants to investment bankers to mutual and hedge fund traders and analysts. The regulators are looking into whether nonpublic information is passed along by independent analysts and consultants who work for companies that provide "expert network" services to hedge funds and mutual funds. These companies arrange meetings with current and former managers from hundreds of companies for traders seeking an investing edge.

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