The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the origin of a false report on a CNN citizen-journalist Web site that Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs had a heart attack and was hospitalized.

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The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the origin of a false report on a CNN citizen-journalist Web site that Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs had a heart attack and was hospitalized.

Apple shares dropped $3.03, or 3 percent, to close at $97.07, after diving as low as $94.65, or 5.4 percent, earlier in the session. It was the first time shares have traded at less than $100 since May 2007.

The shares fell after the post on iReport.com cited an anonymous source saying Jobs was rushed to the hospital after suffering a “major heart attack.”

The agency’s enforcement unit is trying to determine whether the iReport.com posting was intended to push down the stock price.

CNN is cooperating with the SEC’s probe, network spokeswoman Jennifer Martin said.

The report is “not true,” said Apple spokesman Steve Dowling.

Concern about Jobs’ health weighed on the shares this year, contributing to a 51 percent drop.

The stock swing caused by Friday’s erroneous report drew renewed calls for Apple, which has said only that Jobs’s health is a “private matter,” to be more forthcoming, said Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, senior associate dean at Yale University’s School of Management.

“Leaving it to rumor and speculation is reckless,” said Sonnenfeld, who has owned Apple shares since 1997, the year Jobs returned as CEO.

“If he is healthy, they should say so. If he’s not, we should know that, too.”

John Heine, a spokesman for the SEC, declined to comment.

Jobs, who had surgery four years ago to treat pancreatic cancer, appeared visibly thinner at a company event in June, raising speculation he was ill. Apple said at the time he was suffering from a “common bug” and has declined to comment further on his health.

CNN describes iReport.com as a place for “Unedited. Unfiltered. News.” and said it “makes no guarantee about the content or coverage” on the site.

Content is “entirely user-generated,” said CNN’s Martin.

“After the content in question was uploaded to iReport.com, the community brought it to our attention,” Martin said. “The fraudulent content was removed and the user’s account was disabled.”

Jobs, 53, told members of Apple’s board in July he is cancer-free and dealing with nutritional problems after his cancer surgery, which can lead to weight loss, The New York Times reported at the time, citing people close to Jobs.

Last month, Jobs told cable network CNBC he is healthy and blamed concern about his health on hedge funds that are shorting the stock. Shorting, or short selling, is the practice of selling borrowed shares and betting on repurchasing them later at a lower price.