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Securities

  • February 19, 2019

    US Bank Can’t Save RMBS Suit, Keeps 2nd Chance In Another

    New York’s highest court handed down mixed rulings on Tuesday in a pair of residential mortgage-backed securities cases pitting U.S. Bank against a Credit Suisse-owned deal sponsor, saying that the bank can’t relate its way around a problem in one case but isn’t doomed by a key purported procedural misstep in the other.

  • February 19, 2019

    WeissLaw Seeks Lead In Investor Action Over Staples Merger

    An investor asked a Delaware federal judge on Monday to be named lead plaintiff and sought to appoint law firm WeissLaw LLP as lead counsel in his proposed class action accusing Essendant Inc. of withholding key details and potential conflicts of interests associated with its merger with Staples Inc.

  • February 19, 2019

    KPMG Bosses Squeezed Me From Day 1, Cooperator Says

    An accountant who left the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board for KPMG and agreed to testify against his former colleagues told a Manhattan jury on Tuesday that his supervisors at the Big Four auditing powerhouse began pressing him for regulatory secrets starting on his first day on the job.

  • February 19, 2019

    Investors Bancorp Deal Notice Needs Fixing, Chancery Says

    A Delaware Chancery Court judge gave the directors of Investors Bancorp Inc. and a proposed class of shareholders one week to work out a fix to the language in a notice of settlement describing a deal to end litigation over $50 million in director stock awards, or else risk undoing years of litigation.

  • February 19, 2019

    Biotech Co. Says $3.6M Award Wrongly Calculated

    A biotechnology company urged a New York federal court not to enforce an arbitration award issued to a trading firm over an alleged breach of a financing agreement, arguing that the $3.6 million award was improperly calculated based on the value of stock warrants that are actually worthless.

  • February 19, 2019

    Chancery Awards Legal Costs In DAVA-Endo Merger Case

    The Delaware chancellor on Tuesday awarded $70,000 for legal costs to an investor trust that filed a proposed class action over flawed approvals issued in connection with DAVA Pharmaceuticals Inc.’s $600 million merger with Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc., finding that the deficient approvals had "potential to wreak havoc later."

  • February 19, 2019

    SEC Floats Letting All Cos. 'Test The Waters' Before IPOs

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday proposed expanding its so-called testing the waters policy to make it easier for companies of all sizes to solicit feedback from certain investors before pursuing initial public offerings, a benefit that is currently limited to smaller companies.

  • February 19, 2019

    Holland & Knight Snags 12-Atty Akerman Insurance Team

    Akerman LLP's ex-CEO David Spector and a team of 11 other attorneys from Akerman’s fraud and recovery practice group have jumped to Holland & Knight LLP, where they will continue to investigate and litigate fraud schemes on behalf of insurers and financial services companies, the firm announced Tuesday.

  • February 19, 2019

    HSBC Allocates $626M For Tax-Related Investigations

    HSBC Holdings PLC has earmarked $626 million to deal with ongoing international investigations into tax fraud and money laundering allegations that could result in fines exceeding an estimated $800 million, the British bank revealed in its annual report released Tuesday.

  • February 19, 2019

    While Not A 'Platonic Ideal,' Irish Investor To Lead EZCorp Suit

    A Texas federal judge said Tuesday that although he’s not the “platonic ideal” of a class representative, an investor in Dublin is nonetheless fit to lead a class action accusing pawn shop operator and "instant cash" loan provider EZCorp. Inc of misrepresenting its financial well-being.

  • February 19, 2019

    Ex-Tesla Exec, Now Lyft's COO, Will Testify In SolarCity Suit

    The former head of sales at Tesla, now the chief operating officer at Lyft Inc., will be subpoenaed to give a deposition in a Delaware shareholder lawsuit alleging that Tesla founder Elon Musk exercised conflicted control to orchestrate a $2.6 billion bailout of SolarCity Corp., according to documents filed in Massachusetts state court.

  • February 19, 2019

    SEC Says Guilty Plea Warrants Win On Civil Fraud Claims

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission told a New York federal court Friday that a guilty plea by a man who participated in a pump-and-dump scheme entitles the agency to a quick win on most claims in its parallel civil suit.

  • February 19, 2019

    Auto Parts Co. Denied Redo On Investor Suit Dismissal Bid

    An Illinois federal judge told automotive parts reseller Fenix Parts Inc. on Friday that he was not swayed by its “attempt to rehash already rejected arguments” in asking for reconsideration of his decision not to toss a proposed class action over the company’s initial public offering.

  • February 19, 2019

    Royal Park Loses 2nd Cert. Try In BNY Mellon MBS Suit

    Royal Park Investments SA/NV’s bid for class certification in its suit against The Bank of New York Mellon Corp. over failed mortgage-backed securities was denied for the second time by a New York federal judge who found that the investors’ claims did not satisfy class action commonality requirements.

  • February 19, 2019

    SEC Can't Ignore State Action On Fiduciary Rules

    Several states are positioned to outlaw self-interested trades in the broker-dealer business, pressuring the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to raise professional standards beyond a proposal released last year that falls short of the strict fiduciary duties some policymakers want.

  • February 19, 2019

    McKinsey Pays $15M For Failing To Disclose Ch. 11 Conflicts

    The U.S. Trustee’s Office announced Tuesday it has reached a $15 million settlement with consulting giant McKinsey & Co. over allegations McKinsey failed to adequately disclose possible conflicts of interest in a trio of major bankruptcies.

  • February 19, 2019

    Ex-Barclays Chair Feared Capital Plans Looked 'Too Clever'

    The man who chaired Barclays PLC during the financial crisis told a jury in London on Tuesday that he was concerned the bank could appear "too clever by half" in its attempts to raise capital from a group of investors as it sought to avoid a bailout by the U.K. government.

  • February 19, 2019

    High Court Won't Wade Into USC's ERISA Arbitration Battle

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday turned away the University of Southern California’s bid for review of a Ninth Circuit decision that gave the school's workers a green light to pursue a closely watched ERISA class action in court, as opposed to through individual arbitration.

  • February 15, 2019

    The $1B Question: Can Puerto Rico Afford Its Bankruptcy Bills?

    Law firms and other professional service providers are seeking more than $300 million in bills for Puerto Rico’s unprecedented restructuring — a figure that is eventually expected to surpass $1 billion. Some local attorneys are questioning the costs.

  • February 15, 2019

    Puerto Rico’s Law Firms Find Their Footing After Disaster

    Out of disaster comes opportunity. That is what the corporate legal community of Puerto Rico found after Hurricane Maria. But for many attorneys, the recovery is personal, too.

Expert Analysis

  • What Crypto Exchanges, Holders Can Learn From QuadrigaCX

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    Last month, cryptocurrency exchange QuadrigaCX reported it had lost access to about $150 million in customers’ holdings due to the death of its CEO. Legal counsel for both exchanges and customers can guard against such risks by insisting on better procedures for access to customer accounts, say Daniel Garrie and Ryan Abbott of JAMS.

  • Opinion

    The Problem With 'Optimal' Diversity

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    Organizations should seek to avoid discrimination, but they should also be wary of the idea that diverse teams function better than nondiverse teams, because this reasoning lacks evidence and can lead to a slippery slope, says J.B. Heaton of J.B. Heaton Research LLC.

  • Oxbow: Alignment Is Key In Put Valuation Processes

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    The recent Oxbow Carbon Unitholder Litigation demonstrated many common put valuation issues, but also how an alignment mechanism can foster cooperation despite a highly adversarial relationship, say Kyle Gann and Jason Osborn of Winston & Strawn LLP.

  • How Newly Broadened Venezuela Sanctions Affect Securities

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    The U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control recently amended the general licenses that authorize dealings in bonds and securities otherwise prohibited by U.S. sanctions on Venezuela — apparently to target parties that would facilitate transactions between Petróleos de Venezuela SA securities holders and blocked individuals, say attorneys at Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP.

  • Maker-Taker Fees In A Fragmented Equity Market

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    Competing U.S. equity exchanges attract liquidity by offering rebates to orders that make liquidity, and charging fees to orders that take liquidity, which may distort brokers’ incentives against their fiduciary duty. Such maker-taker fees are likely to attract further scrutiny from regulators and courts, say Ilan Guedj and Zhong Zhang of Bates White LLC.

  • SEC Should Revisit Its Special Purpose Acquisition Co. Regs

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    Although the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has removed some roadblocks to capital formation, it has not taken a fresh look at special purpose acquisition companies in over a decade — leaving operating companies that go public by merging with SPACs saddled with unnecessary restrictions, says Carol Anne Huff of Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

  • PCAOB Enforcement Actions Decline As Board Faces Change

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    Along with the appointment of five new members and other personnel changes at the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, last year saw fewer settled disciplinary orders made public by the board. The decline is consistent with the trend at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, says Robert Cox of Briglia Hundley PC.

  • Fresh Takes On Seeking Costs And Fees Under Rule 45

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    Recent case law reveals that courts vary widely in their approaches to shifting the costs and fees incurred in responding to a Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 45 subpoena. Nonparties responding to such requests should consider certain district court trends, say attorneys at Pepper Hamilton LLP.

  • 10th Circ. Engages Superstorm Scalia With New 'Monsoon'

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    The Tenth Circuit's recent extraterritorial application of securities law against Traffic Monsoon LLC and its founder was arguably inconsistent with the statutory text being examined. This case could bring the crux of Justice Antonin Scalia’s opinion in Morrison v. National Australia Bank back to the U.S. Supreme Court, says Timothy Work of Steptoe & Johnson LLP.

  • Series

    Judging A Book: Smith Camp Reviews 'Echo Of Its Time'

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    "Echo of Its Time" is the story of Nebraska’s federal district court from statehood in 1867 to the demise of Prohibition in 1933. Professors John Wunder and Mark Scherer have written an objective, unsentimental and insightful history, layered with context and rich in character study, says U.S. District Judge Laurie Smith Camp of the District of Nebraska.