• December 17, 2014

    UBS Can't Duck $1.4B Bail In French Tax Evasion Probe

    France’s highest court has rejected UBS AG’s appeal of a €1.1 billion ($1.36 billion) bond for a French investigation into claims that the Swiss banking giant helped wealthy French clients dodge taxes, UBS said Wednesday.

  • December 17, 2014

    NCUA Claims US Bank, Bank Of America Failed MBS Trusts

    The National Credit Union Administration has sued U.S. Bank National Association and Bank of America National Association in New York federal court, alleging they failed to perform their duties as trustees for 99 residential mortgage-backed securities trusts, the agency said Wednesday.

  • December 17, 2014

    11th Circ. Says Dueling Cases Void Insurance Exclusion

    The Eleventh Circuit on Wednesday overturned a lower court’s decision that St. Paul Mercury Insurance Co. didn’t owe coverage for an underlying $15 million suit brought by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., ruling that an insured v. insured exclusion was ambiguous because courts' interpretation of similar language has been varied.

  • December 17, 2014

    Broker-Dealer Execs Plead Guilty In $60M Bribery Scheme

    Two former executives of broker-dealer Direct Access Partners LLC pled guilty Wednesday to participating in a $60 million bribery scheme arising out of the company's transactions with a Venezuelan bank, in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

  • December 17, 2014

    Countrywide Whistleblower Nabs $58M Over BofA Deals

    A former Bank of America Corp. executive whose tips about mortgage fraud led to two landmark judgments against the firm will receive nearly $58 million in whistleblower awards, according to recently released New York federal court documents.

  • December 17, 2014

    Highland Seeks $172M From Credit Suisse In Refi Fight

    A Highland Capital Management-managed entity on Wednesday asked Texas jurors to award it $172 million in damages for what it says was fraudulent inducement by Credit Suisse AG brokers to invest in a $540 million loan refinance for a Las Vegas real estate property.

  • December 17, 2014

    CFPB Attack On Sprint Sets Up Fight Over Agency's Reach

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Wednesday lawsuit against Sprint Corp. alleging phone bill cramming opened up a new front in its supervision of the consumer financial markets, and set the stage for fights over how far the bureau can stretch its jurisdiction.

  • December 17, 2014

    On Deck Lands $1.4B Valuation As IPO Prices Above Range

    Small business lender On Deck Capital Inc. priced above its targeted range and climbed in its debut on the New York Stock Exchange, as investors rallied around the second alternative lender to tap the public markets this week.

  • December 17, 2014

    Madoff Trustee Gets $600M In New Clawback Settlements OK'd

    A New York bankruptcy judge has approved $600 million worth of settlements in clawback suits brought by the SIPA trustee for Bernard Madoff's failed securities firm and also approved the consolidation of two suits against would-be opt-outs from an earlier $7.2 billion deal with mega-investor Jeffry Picower.

  • December 17, 2014

    Yellen Expresses Confidence In NY Fed’s Dudley

    Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen on Wednesday expressed confidence Federal Reserve Bank of New York President William Dudley’s leadership of the key regional reserve bank in the face of withering criticism following reports of problems in its supervision of some of the largest U.S. banks.

  • December 17, 2014

    Divided SEC Fines Ex-State Street Execs After Reversal

    A divided U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission this week partly overturned a 2011 decision by an agency judge who refused to sanction two former State Street Corp. executives over a subprime bond fund they ran leading up to the financial crisis.

  • December 17, 2014

    BofA Can't Quash IT Workers' Overtime Class Action

    A New Jersey federal judge Tuesday dismissed some claims in a putative class action accusing Bank of America NA of depriving information technology workers of payable hourly wages for overtime for the past six years, but said plaintiffs had standing to file suit for Fair Labor Standard Act violations.

  • December 17, 2014

    Williams Mullen Nabs Tax Expert From KPMG

    Williams Mullen gained an international tax pro this month, strengthening the firm’s ability to advise clients looking to navigate the complex world of tax while conducting business across borders.

  • December 17, 2014

    Brazil's Cielo To Issue $1.28B To Fund JV With Bank

    Brazilian payment processor Cielo SA said Wednesday that it will privately issue 3.46 billion reais ($1.28 billion) in debt to help pay for its 70 percent share of a joint venture with state lender Banco do Brasil that will manage credit and debit card transactions.

  • December 17, 2014

    CFPB Sues Sprint Over Alleged Bill Cramming

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau — in what is seen as an expansion of the bureau’s reach — on Wednesday sued Sprint Corp., alleging that the mobile phone carrier illegally crammed tens of millions of dollars in illegal, unauthorized charges onto consumers' bills.

  • December 17, 2014

    Obama To Start Normalizing US-Cuba Relations

    President Barack Obama announced the U.S. will begin normalizing diplomatic relations with Cuba for the first time since 1961, saying the nation's “outdated” sanctions policy had failed and lifting restrictions on interstate money exchange, travel, trade, telecommunications and third-country financial transactions after the release of an imprisoned American contractor.

  • December 17, 2014

    Banking MVP: Davis Polk's Margaret Tahyar

    Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP’s Margaret Tahyar guided multiple banks such as Citigroup Inc. and Bank of America Corp. through the regulatory changes that began to take effect in 2014, coaching them through the living will process and preparing them for the Volcker Rule to earn herself a spot as one of Law360’s Banking MVPs.

  • December 17, 2014

    2nd Circ. Wonders If Argentina Debt-Dodging Is 'Pathological'

    The Second Circuit on Wednesday asked whether Argentina would bother complying with bond investors' requests for information related to bank, real estate and contractual assets if the court upheld a trial judge's discovery order, with one appellate judge calling the South American country a "pathological" and recalcitrant deadbeat.

  • December 16, 2014

    Banking Regulators Pave Way For ISDA Swaps Stay Provision

    U.S. banking regulators Tuesday issued a rule to reflect an agreement by Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Bank of America Corp. and 16 other global banks to stay early termination rights in cross-border swaps transactions in adherence to the International Swaps and Derivatives Association's 2014 Resolution Stay Protocol.

  • December 16, 2014

    Levin Takes One Last Swing At Wall Street With Trading Bill

    Sen. Carl Levin is taking one last swipe at Wall Street corruption before he retires next month, urging the Senate on Tuesday to take action to limit financial institutions’ ability to trade on commodities information they gain by owning large swaths of the industries they’re betting on.

Expert Analysis

  • Spotlight On SFO: Prosecuting In The Regulator’s Shadow

    Aamir Khan

    There remain serious questions on whether the Serious Fraud Office in the United Kingdom is really best equipped to be prosecuting individuals relating to issues such as Libor and forex manipulation, which are already being investigated by the Financial Conduct Authority and other regulators, says Aamir Khan, general counsel and the senior director for the U.K. and Europe at legal services firm Clutch Group.

  • What Happens When Legal Aid Cuts Stimulate Pro Bono?

    Kevin J. Curnin

    The bad news coming out of the European Pro Bono Summit in November was the rising toll of heavy cuts to public legal aid in England. From this crossroad, there is a lot to be learned about the relationship between public and private assistance, the direction of legal help for the poor in the EU, and whether the American legal aid/pro bono experience offers a road map for what’s next in Europe, says Kevin Curnin of the Association ... (continued)

  • Chancery Court Speaks To Underlying Reality of Influence

    John E. Sorkin

    In Zhongpin Inc. Stockholders Litigation, the Delaware Chancery Court found the plaintiffs had pled sufficient facts to raise an inference that company founder, chairman and CEO Xianfu Zhu was a controlling stockholder — even though he owned only 17 percent of the stock and had not controlled the directors’ decision relating to his going-private bid. A greater willingness to cooperate in the transaction would have advantaged Zhu's ... (continued)

  • Pressure Is On For Israeli Banks

    Robert Henoch

    Israeli financial institutions and U.S. holders of Israeli accounts have much to fear as the U.S. government accelerates its enforcement push against alleged U.S. tax evaders and their putative facilitators. However, those who fight back are likely to find that it is significantly easier for U.S. authorities to threaten complex financial prosecutions than to win them at trial, says Robert Henoch, a former assistant U.S. attorney no... (continued)

  • Russia Sanctions Bill Will Likely Become Law

    Harry Clark

    While the president’s public remarks indicate his reluctance to take unilateral sanctions action relating to Russia, there is a good chance that he will sign the Ukraine Freedom Support Act into law, given broad bipartisan support of the legislation in both houses of Congress, say attorneys with Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.

  • 2015 May Be 'Year Of The Individual' At DOJ

    Timothy Belevetz

    Recent trends, along with seemingly choreographed statements from high-ranking U.S. Department of Justice officials, provide something of a forecast for what may be on deck for 2015. An analysis of that data points to three key areas of focus, all tied to a coordinated effort to shift the spotlight onto individual offenders, says Timothy Belevetz, a partner with Holland & Knight LLP and former federal prosecutor.

  • Deception Concerns Loom Large At CFPB Over Prepaid Cards

    Reed Brodsky

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau wants the same rules and regulations for overdrafts in credit cards to apply to prepaid cards. The desire appears to be in response to comments by consumer groups and community organizations that argued prepaid cards with overdraft fees are inherently deceptive, say attorneys at Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP.

  • 3 Questions To Ask Yourself Before Hiring Appellate Counsel

    David Axelrad

    In the classic case, a client and his attorney seek appellate counsel after the trial court proceedings are concluded. But these days, “classic cases” are few and far between — more and more, appellate lawyers assist in the trial court with preservation of the appellate record and compliance with the many technical rules of appellate procedure, says David Axelrad of Horvitz & Levy LLP.

  • SEC Enforcement: 2014 Review And 2015 Outlook

    Thomas K. Potter

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s recent enforcement policies and actions have been as Chairwoman Mary Jo White promised: aggressive, robust and wide-ranging. The SEC’s enforcement year has sparked equally robust discussion about the proper role and methods of the commission in enforcing the nation’s securities laws. And maybe that robust debate has been a policy objective all along, says Thomas Potter of Burr & Forman LLP.

  • 10 Steps To A FINRA-Compliant Social Media Policy

    Michael R. Manley

    One of the challenges with social media is that most networks offer both static displayed content — e.g., a blog posting — and interactive communication features — e.g., real-time communications from third-party end users. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority rules treat these two functions differently, say attorneys with Venable LLP.