Securities

  • June 30, 2020

    SEC Urged To Upgrade Disclosures On COVID-19, Diversity

    Market participants on Tuesday urged U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission officials to improve consistency in public company disclosures on matters ranging from how the pandemic is impacting operations to how businesses are addressing social concerns like diversity, so investors can make apples-to-apples comparisons among different companies.

  • June 30, 2020

    SEC Fines Ex-Biotech CEO For Fertility Drug Misstatements

    A former CEO of a biotech company focused on fertility treatments agreed Tuesday to pay over $119,000 to settle claims from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that she misled investors about the availability and commercial prospects for a product.

  • June 30, 2020

    Del. Justices Reverse $18B Towers Watson Merger Suit Toss

    A split Delaware Supreme Court on Tuesday reversed and sent back for reconsideration the Chancery Court's mid-2019 dismissal of a stockholder suit challenging the $18 billion merger of Towers Watson & Co. and Willis Group, saying the lower court mistakenly deferred too much to the combined company when it dismissed breach of fiduciary duty claims against Towers' CEO.

  • June 30, 2020

    Offit Kurman's Forum Argument Gets Malpractice Suit Tossed

    Offit Kurman PA on Tuesday ducked a malpractice suit in Texas federal court in which a Houston-based online furniture store sought over $1 million for alleged bill padding and double-billing, after a judge held the store's owner had agreed any dispute would be litigated in Delaware.

  • June 30, 2020

    Genomic Health Investor Calls Exact Sciences Merger Unfair

    A former Genomic Health Inc. investor blasted the company's planned $2.8 billion merger last year with fellow cancer treatment developer Exact Sciences Corp. as a sweetheart deal that undervalued the company, failed to disclose important information to investors and was agreed to by the controlling shareholder before terms were finalized.

  • June 30, 2020

    Chancery Asked To Boot Suit Over Perelman-Led 'Scheme'

    A lawsuit alleging Scientific Games, its officers and billionaire investor Ronald Perelman engaged in a "scheme" to damage Sylebra Capital Partner's investment and strengthen the billionaire businessman's control over the gaming company has no place in Delaware Chancery Court, a vice chancellor was told Tuesday.

  • June 30, 2020

    Ex-Wilmington Trust Brass Seek To Scotch Fraud Convictions

    Four former Wilmington Trust Corp. executives urged the Third Circuit to undo their fraud convictions for failing to flag real estate loans totaling millions of dollars that were in arrears, arguing Tuesday that there was no regulatory or statutory definition of "past due" on which to base criminal charges.

  • June 30, 2020

    Nvidia Says Investor Suit Over Crypto Mining Sales Still Fails

    Technology company Nvidia has asked a California federal judge to toss a shareholder suit accusing it of understating more than $1 billion in crypto-related sales, saying investors are "cherry-picking" portions of executives' statements to allege fraud.

  • June 30, 2020

    2nd Circ. OKs $20M Award For Madoff Investor Class Attys

    The Second Circuit on Tuesday rejected the last objection to a nearly $20 million fee award for counsel of an investor class that received a $1 billion settlement for money lost through Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme.

  • June 30, 2020

    Pot Co. Cites Force Majeure To Skip Payment On $35M Debt

    A Canadian cannabis holding company with properties in several U.S. states has invoked force majeure to delay an interest payment on $35 million in debt, saying the coronavirus pandemic has made raising capital "virtually impossible."

  • June 30, 2020

    Robbins, WeissLaw To Lead Apple Suit Over Slow IPhones

    Robbins LLP and WeissLaw LLP have won co-lead counsel status in a shareholder derivative action accusing Apple Inc.'s top brass of intentionally slowing down its older iPhone models after a California federal judge found that the firms had "an edge" over two competing firms.

  • June 30, 2020

    Nonbank Lender Urges Calif. Judge To End PPP Suit

    Nonbank lender Fountainhead Commercial Capital LLC has asked a California federal judge to end litigation alleging the company disadvantaged small-dollar applicants for federal Paycheck Protection Program loans, arguing it had been appropriately transparent with would-be borrowers against the tumultuous backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic.

  • June 30, 2020

    Robbins Geller Appointed To Lead Fifth Third Investor Suit

    An Illinois federal judge on Monday tapped Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP to represent a proposed class of investors who allege Fifth Third Bancorp was secretly opening accounts in customers' names for years, causing stock prices to tumble after impending enforcement actions came to light.

  • June 29, 2020

    Atty Says Founders Left Online Legal Marketplace In Ruins

    An attorney with an ownership stake in the online legal platform UpCounsel Inc. filed a derivative suit Saturday in Delaware Chancery Court against the company's founders, asserting they stripped the company of value and left it in shambles before bolting to take jobs at LinkedIn.

  • June 29, 2020

    Chinese Investor Sues Grocery GC Over Soured EB-5 Bid

    A New York attorney — and the grocery store and subsidiary that he represents — were hit with a lawsuit in Manhattan federal court accusing the lawyer of tricking a Chinese investor into shelling out cash into the company for an EB-5 visa that never came to fruition.

  • June 29, 2020

    High Court's CFPB Ruling May Leave Other Agencies Exposed

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has survived its brush with the U.S. Supreme Court, but the high court's decision giving the president free rein to fire the head of the agency could provide a springboard for future challenges to the independence of other regulatory agencies.

  • June 29, 2020

    Brokerage Firm Ran $4.4M Options Fraud Scheme, CFTC Says

    The Commodity Futures Trading Commission sued a Chicago-based brokerage firm and four executives and associates in Illinois federal court Monday, accusing the group of defrauding customers out of $4.4 million through a scheme involving options on futures transactions.

  • June 29, 2020

    2nd Circ. Rejects Challenge To SEC's Regulation Best Interest

    With only a few days left before its compliance date, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's Regulation Best Interest was upheld by a Second Circuit panel unswayed by arguments that the new rule governing standards of conduct for broker-dealers doesn't do enough to protect investors.

  • June 29, 2020

    Venable Adds 3 Former Schiff Hardin Partners

    Venable LLP is snagging three partners from Schiff Hardin LLP as part of a move to bolster the firm's commercial litigation practice expansion on the West Coast.

  • June 29, 2020

    Miller Energy Investors Win Cert. In Suit Over KPMG Audit

    A Tennessee federal magistrate judge on Monday recommended certifying two proposed investor classes accusing accounting giant KPMG of helping the now-defunct Miller Energy Resources Inc. falsify financials about oil and gas assets, finding the shareholders proved they fulfill all federal requirements.

  • June 29, 2020

    Match Investors Sue IAC, Diller Over 'Grossly Unfair' Split

    A class of Match Group Inc. stockholders unveiled a 10-count direct and derivative suit Monday against the company's directors, along with InterActiveCorp and media mogul Barry Diller, saying an elaborately conflicted separation of the two companies could cost Match and its stockholders billions.

  • June 29, 2020

    Opko Inks $16.5M Investor Deal After SEC Suit Drops Stock

    Opko Health Inc. has reached a $16.5 million deal resolving investor claims that it artificially inflated the stock of companies it had invested in, causing its own stock to drop when the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission sued over the behavior, according to settlement papers filed in Florida federal court Monday.

  • June 29, 2020

    Sleep Number Founder Gets Early Release From Prison

    The founder of the Sleep Number mattress company, who used another of his companies to swindle investors out of more than $57 million, will get out of federal prison 14 years ahead of schedule after a judge found him to be at particularly high risk for COVID-19.

  • June 29, 2020

    Endo Investors Seek Cert. After Losing Price-Fixing Claims

    Endo International investors want a Pennsylvania federal judge to sign off on their bid to become a full-fledged class action, telling the court their claims the drugmaker artificially inflated stock prices are perfectly suited for the legal vehicle.

  • June 29, 2020

    Labaton Sucharow To Lead Abiomed Stock-Drop Class Action

    A New York federal judge on Monday tapped Labaton Sucharow LLP to lead a proposed class of investors alleging medical device developer Abiomed Inc. misled them about the company's finances, leading to a drop in stock prices.

Expert Analysis

  • High Court's SEC Enforcement Ruling Has Tax Consequences

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    In light of the U.S. Supreme Court's recent decision in Liu v. Securities and Exchange Commission, taxpayers whose pre-Tax Cuts and Jobs Act disgorgement deductions were rejected should consider contesting the Internal Revenue Service's determination, say attorneys at Chamberlain Hrdlicka.

  • Opinion

    To Achieve Diversity, Law Firms Must Reinvent Hiring Process

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    If law firms are truly serious about making meaningful change in terms of diversity, they must adopt a demographically neutral, unbiased hiring equation that looks at personality traits with greater import than grades and class rank, says Thomas Latino at Florida State University College of Law.

  • Virus, Regs Highlight Need For Model State Whistleblower Law

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    The North American Securities Administrators Association's recently proposed model state whistleblower law could be a timely weapon against securities misconduct in light of the new and unique opportunities COVID-19 presents for fraudsters, and certain federal registration exemptions that may soon be relaxed, says attorney Patrick McCloskey.

  • What Hong Kong Policy Shift Means For US Finance Cos.

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    Now that the U.S. no longer considers Hong Kong autonomous from China, stateside financial services companies should monitor public company audit reporting, non-U.S. futures and swaps trading, and international capital reporting, say Matthew Kluchenek and Matthew Bisanz at Mayer Brown.

  • 2nd Circ. Affirms High Corporate Scienter Pleading Standards

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    The Second Circuit’s recent decision in Jackson v. Abernathy provides powerful tools for defendants to argue that a securities fraud plaintiff has not adequately pled corporate scienter in the absence of particularized factual allegations, say attorneys at Cleary.

  • Cybersecurity Steps For Law Firms Amid Heightened Risks

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    With large swaths of the population indoors and primarily online, cybercriminals will be able to exploit law firms more easily now than ever before, but some basic precautions can help, says Joel Wallenstrom at Wickr.

  • Madoff Recovery's Next Steps After Justices' Petition Pass

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    The U.S. Supreme Court’s recent refusal to review a Second Circuit decision allowing recovery of funds Bernie Madoff transferred outside the U.S. leaves open the question of whether the clawback initiative’s claims will survive given the strict pleading and proof standards that have evolved over the last 12 years of litigation, say attorneys at Quarles & Brady.

  • Opinion

    High Court Should Review Goldman's Maintenance Theory

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    Now that the full Second Circuit has denied rehearing in Arkansas Teacher Retirement System v. Goldman Sachs, the U.S. Supreme Court should review the flawed theory that misstatements can affect stock prices simply by maintaining preexisting inflation, say attorneys at Gibson Dunn.

  • Opinion

    It's Time For Law Firms To Support Work-From-Home Culture

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    Now that law firms are on board with fully remote work environments, they must develop policies that match in-office culture and align partner and associate expectations, says Summer Eberhard at Major Lindsey.

  • Opinion

    Republicans Keep Confirming Unqualified Judicial Nominees

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    What emerges from the group of 200 federal judges confirmed by the Senate under President Donald Trump is a judiciary stacked with young conservative ideologues, many of whom lack basic judicial qualifications, says Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

  • High Court Missed Chance To Define SEC Enforcement Limits

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    In its decision Monday upholding the practice of collecting disgorgement in Liu v. U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the U.S. Supreme Court missed its opportunity to set limitations on the SEC's ability to impose statutory remedies in enforcement actions, and to give the final word on the permissible lifespan of civil enforcement actions​​​​​​​, says David Slovick at Barnes & Thornburg.

  • Commercial Mortgage Loan Modifications Amid COVID-19

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    As commercial real estate lenders and borrowers increasingly rely on loan modifications to address challenges posed by COVID-19, they must adapt their strategies to the specific type of loan involved, says Fernando Landa at Crosbie Gliner.

  • Tips For Crafting The Perfect Law Firm Alert

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    As lawyers have had more time to write in recent weeks, the number of law firm alerts has increased massively, but a lot of them fail to capture readers and deliver new business, says Richard Torrenzano at The Torrenzano Group.

  • How COVID-19 May Influence SEC's Enforcement Analysis

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    COVID-19 presents a number of unique issues for the economic and statistical analyses the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission uses to investigate and prove securities violations, which will become increasingly imperative in its pandemic-related enforcement, say Charles Riely and Grace Signorelli-Cassady at Jenner & Block and Scott Walster at Global Economics Group.

  • Opinion

    It's Time For Valuation Experts To Let Go Of The Size Premium

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    Valuation experts should abandon the practice of applying a size premium to estimate the cost of equity for smaller firms because its use jeopardizes the reliability of valuation conclusions, says Clifford Ang at Compass Lexecon.

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