Another Subprime-Related Securities Lawsuit Dismissal: In yet another subprime-related securities class action lawsuit decision in defendants’ favor, on July 29, 2009, District of Connecticut Judge Stefan Underhill granted the defendants’ motion to dismiss in the securities lawsuit pending against CBRE Realty Finance and certain of its directors and officers. A copy of the opinion can be found here. Background regarding the case can be found here.


As reflected in Alison Frankel’s July 30, 2009 article about the decision in The American Lawyer Daily (here), the court’s order in the CBRE Realty case may be particularly noteworthy because the plaintiffs’ complaint asserts claims under the ’33 Act, in connection with which the plaintiffs would not have to plead scienter or even loss causation in order to survive a motion to dismiss — they only need to plead a material misrepresentation or omission.


In his July 29 order, Judge Underhill found that the plaintiffs had not adequately pled that the alleged misrepresentations or omissions were material. The plaintiffs had alleged that in connection with company’s IPO, the company’s offering documents had not adequately disclosed the risk of default in connection with two Maryland condominium conversion projects known as Triton. Judge Underhilll concluded that plaintiffs had failed to allege that there was not sufficient collateral to back the $51 million loan to Triton.


Judge Underhill’s ruling does not indicate whether or not it is with or without prejudice; however, he did order the court clerk to close the file.


I have added the CBRE decision to my register of subprime and credit crisis-related lawsuit dismissal motion outcomes, which can be accessed here.


Still More Bank Failures: In case you missed it, this past Friday night, the FDIC closed five more banks, bringing the year to date total number of bank failures to 69. The FDIC has taken control of 32 banks just since June 19, 2009. An August 1, 2009 Bloomberg article detailing the latest bank closures can be found here.


The most recent round of bank closures continues the trend concentration of recent bank closures within the community banks. Four of the five latest bank closures involved institutions that had assets of under $1 billion. Of the 69 banks that have closed this year, 59 have had assets under $1 billion.


The signs are that the bank closures will continue for some time to come. The July 31, 2009 Wall Street Journal reported (here) that banking regulators have already entered at least 285 memoranda of understanding with banking institutions this year, on pace for nearly 600 by year end, compared with 399 for the full year last year. While the MOUs are designed to try to direct the institutions away from closure, the sheer number of agreements is a reflection of the difficult circumstances that many banking institutions are facing.


The FDIC’s complete list of banking institutions that have failed since October 2000 can be found here.


Another Madoff-Related Insurance Coverage Action: In an earlier post (here), I noted the arrival of the Madoff-related insurance coverage litigation and suggested there would be much more similar coverage litigation ahead. Another Madoff-related coverage lawsuit has now arrived.


On July 20, 2009, Blezak Black filed an action (here) in New Jersey (Camden County) Superior Court against its crime insurers. The plaintiff alleges to have invested over $13 million with Madoff, which it lost. The plaintiffs’ crime insurers have denied coverage for the claim. The plaintiff’s complaint alleges breach of contract and seeks a judicial declaration of coverage.


I have added this lawsuit to my register of Madoff-related insurance coverage litigation, which can be found in Table V of my register of Madoff lawsuits. The register can be accessed here.


Special thanks to a loyal reader for providing a copy of the latest Madoff-related insurance coverage lawsuit complaint.