Securities & Complex Commercial Litigation

  • Represented one of the world’s largest independent market makers in a putative class action alleging defendant market makers violated the Securities Act and state laws by selling unregistered securities. Our client successfully moved to dismiss 29 of plaintiffs’ 30 claims, and then we led the remaining defendants in successfully moving for summary judgment dismissing the remaining claim in Ohio federal court.
  • Representing leading national securities exchanges in consolidated putative class actions filed in New York federal District Court following the release of Michael Lewis’ Flash Boys. The plaintiff alleged contractual breaches arising out of the exchanges’ method of data dissemination. Our clients obtained a full dismissal of all claims by the District Court.
  • Representing leading national securities exchanges in putative class action filed in New York federal court alleging claims of securities fraud relating to high-frequency trading. The District Court dismissed all claims.
  • Representing the Special Litigation Committee of the Board of Directors of a NYSE-listed company in investigating shareholder derivative claims concerning the fairness of a proposed multi-billion dollar merger transaction.
  • Representing several mortgage originators in multiple civil actions in state court, federal court and bankruptcy court alleging billions of dollars in damages arising out of alleged breaches of representations and warranties with respect to mortgage loans.

Looking Forward

The number of securities class action lawsuit filings has increased in each of the past five years (see table, above), a trend that might continue given district and circuit court decisions, post Halliburton II, that arguably lower the bar for establishing market efficiency and invoking the fraud on the market presumption of reliance at the class certification stage. The Supreme Court could choose to address this in 2018. Meantime, the Court’s anticipated Cyan opinion could clarify that SLUSA, enacted by Congress in 1998, foreclosed state courts from having concurrent jurisdiction over “covered class actions” arising under the 1933 Act. That would end the practice, in certain jurisdictions, of remanding those actions to more plaintiff-friendly state courts.