Securities class action lawsuits have been an important part of the litigation scene in Australia for many years. But even though the current class action procedural regime has been in place since 1992, no Australian securities class action lawsuit ever went all the way to judgment – that is, no case ever went to judgment until last week. On October 24, 2019, the Federal Court of Australia issued a post-trial Order in the TPT Patrol Pty Ltd as trustee for Amies Superannuation Fund v Myer Holdings Limited. The court’s ruling, a copy of which can be found here, contains a number of interesting points and could have important implications. A detailed October 25, 2019 memo from the Clyde & Co law firm about the judgment can be found here.  
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As I have detailed in prior posts on this blog, securities class action litigation is well-established in Australia. According to a recent report from ISS Securities Class Action Services, securities class action litigation has grown “markedly” in the last ten years, to the point that outside North America, Australia “is the jurisdiction in which a corporation is most likely to find itself defending against a class action,” and indeed other than the U.S., Australia “is pulling ahead of almost all other countries in terms of active securities class action cases before the courts.” There are however important differences between the Australian and U.S. class action systems, and some of these difference post important challenges for both the courts and for litigants – and indeed have led to calls for reform. The October 23, 2018 report, entitled “Navigating the Australian Securities Class Action Landscape,” can be found here.
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The D&O Diary is on assignment in the Asia Pacific region this week, with a first stop on the itinerary in Sydney, Australia. The primary purpose of my visit was to attend the annual conference of the Australia Professional Indemnity Group (APIG), but I did have a little time before and after the conference to roam around Sydney a bit. Though my visit coincided with the last days of the Southern hemisphere winter, the weather was cooperative enough to allow for some very enjoyable sightseeing and hiking.
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As readers of this blog know, data breach, cyber, and privacy-related issues have become a new important area of securities class action litigation in the U.S. In the following guest post, Andrew Miers, Jason Symons, and Shonagh Rasmussen of the HWL Ebsworth law firm review the possibilities or this type of securities lawsuit in Australia. I would like to thank the authors for allowing me to publish their article as a guest post on this site. I welcome guest post submissions from responsible authors on topics of interest to this site’s readers. Please contact me directly if you would like to submit a guest post. Here is the authors’ guest post.
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In the third-largest securities class action settlement ever in Australia, QBE Insurance has agreed to settle the securities suit pending in the Federal Court of Australia and filed against the company on behalf of QBE investors related to the sharp share price decline the company experienced in December 2013. The amount of the settlement is A$ 132.5 million (US$ 103.5).The company admitted no liability in connection with the settlement. The settlement is subject to Court approval. A copy of QBE’s December 28, 2017 market statement regarding the settlement can be found here.
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072aThe D&O Diary’s Asia Pacific mission continued at the end of last week with a stop in Sydney, for the meetings that were the primary reason for my Asia Pacific trip.  I have been to Sydney several times now, but the city has lost none of its charm for me. If anything, I think I appreciate Australia’s largest city more each time I visit.
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094aTasmania. Ten thousand miles away and about as far away from home as you can get. Tasmania — an island state off the southeastern coast of Australia and about an hour’s plane flight from Melbourne. Its capital city, Hobart, is located on the River Derwent and nestled below the rugged peak of Mt. Wellington. I was there for a brief two day visit this week. My visit to the city was short, but long enough to confirm that Tasmania is not just far away but beautiful as well.
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030aThe D&O Diary is on assignment in Australia this week, for meetings and for a little bit of a look around. The first stop on this sojourn Down Under was in Melbourne, in the Australian state of Victoria, on the southeastern quadrant of the Australian continental landmass. Melbourne is a surprisingly large city. Its metropolitan area population of over 4.5 million makes it the country’s second most populous city. At about 37 degrees southern latitude, it is about as far south as Richmond, Virginia is north. A huge sprawling city like Melbourne is hard to sum up in just a few words, but here’s what you really need to know: in February, it’s summer there. What a great concept.
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australiaClass actions have been a big deal in the U.S. for a long time now, but what is really interesting is that class actions (and other forms of collective action) are now becoming a big deal outside of the U.S. One place in particular where class actions have become a very big deal indeed is in Australia. As detailed in a recent study, class actions have in recent years become a well-established part of Australia’s litigation landscape. Recent judicial developments seem likely to make Australia an even more attractive jurisdiction for class action litigation.
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rehana box
Rehana Box
marie vlassis
Marie Vlassis

As I have noted in several posts on this site (most recently here), one of the recurring D&O insurance coverage questions is the extent of the preclusive effect of the professional services exclusion. In the following guest post, Rehana Box and Marie Vlassis of the Ashurst law firm take a look at judicial developments in Australia regarding this issue. This article previously appeared in the LexisNexis Australian Insurance Law Bulletin. I would like to thank Rehanna and Marie for their willingness to publish their article on this site. I welcome guest post submissions from responsible authors on topics of interest to this blog’s readers. Please contact me directly if you would like to publish a guest post on this site. Here is Rehana and Marie’s guest post.
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