STOCK MARKET: Casey at the Bat

To head the Securities & Exchange Commission, the overworked agency that polices the stock market, President Nixon wanted someone who knew Wall Street from all its angles. The man he chose in February, William J. Casey, a tough-sounding Wall Street tax attorney and onetime Nixon speechwriter, not only knew all the angles but had personally played a few of the wider ones. Casey, 58, is a law partner of former G.O.P. Chairman Leonard Hall and describes himself as "an investor for venture capital." He frequently buys into little-known companies or products in hopes of hitting the jackpot. To judge...

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