securities litigation trends

Cornerstone Research has released its annual survey of securities class action lawsuit filings for 2019. The year’s version of the report introduces some notable innovations. In prior years, the annual report focused exclusively on federal court securities suit filings. In last year’s report, the survey also incorporated significant state court securities litigation data. This year for the first time the report fully incorporates the state court data in the presentation and analysis. The updated report also includes several new interesting perspectives on the past year’s securities litigation filings, particularly with respect to state court lawsuit filings. As the report details, the state court filings “helped push filing activity to record levels.”
Continue Reading Cornerstone Research: Combined Federal and State Data Shows Securities Filings at “Record Levels”

For some time now, some observers had been predicting that we would be seeing a bunch of data breach-related securities class action lawsuits, but the predicted wave never seemed to materialize. However, with a recent uptick in these kinds of cases, that could be changing. On October 8, 2018, in the latest of these kinds of lawsuits to be filed, a plaintiff shareholder filed a securities class action lawsuit against China-based Huazhu Group. As discussed below, there are a number of interesting features of this latest data breach-related securities suit.
Continue Reading Chinese Hotel Company Hit With Data Breach-Related Securities Suit

Prior observers have already noted that in 2017 the value of securities class action lawsuit settlements plunged to lows not seen in years, largely due to from a shortage of large or even moderate settlements. These observations about the lack of larger settlement are underscored by the latest large securities suit settlement report from ISS Securities Class Action Services (ISS). In its annual report, entitled “The Top 100 U.S. Class Action Settlements of All Time (as of December 31, 2017)” (here), ISS reports that only two securities class action lawsuit settlements approved during 2017 were large enough to make the Top 100 list. The report has a number of other interesting observations about securities suit settlements as well.
Continue Reading ISS Releases Updated Top 100 U.S. Securities Suit Settlements List

Most informed observers know that IPO companies are more susceptible to securities class action litigation than are more seasoned companies. IPO companies usually have short operating histories and so their post-offering performance can be unpredictable and may include unexpected developments. When IPO companies stumble out of the blocks, they can attract a securities suit just a short time after their debut. An example of this occurred earlier this year when Snap, Inc. was hit with a securities suit two months after its IPO. A more recent example of this sequence involved Blue Apron Holdings, which this past week was hit with a securities suit just seven weeks after its IPO. These cases underscore the securities litigation vulnerability of IPO companies, which in turn has important implications.
Continue Reading When IPO Companies Stumble Out of the Blocks

life sciencesIn the Bard’s timeless words, what’s past is prologue. And in that same vein, many of the last year’s most pronounced securities class action lawsuit filing trends are already showing signs of strong continuity in the early days of the New Year. As shown in my recent annual securities class action lawsuit filings analysis, by year-end, a record number of securities suits had been filed during 2016, with life sciences companies among the most frequent lawsuit targets. We are only just a few days into 2017, but these securities suit filings trends already appear to be continuing in the New Year, as so far this year both the continued strong filing pace and the heightened levels of securities suit activity involving life sciences companies are already appear to be well-established.
Continue Reading Early 2017 Securities Suit Filings Show Continued Active Pace, Life Sciences Focus

wooden-judges-gavelLargely driven by a surge in the number of federal court merger objection class action lawsuits, the number of securities class action lawsuit filings during 2016 reached record high levels. The number of filings in 2016 accelerated as the year increased, with a significantly greater number of filings in the year’s second half, compared to the number of filings in the year’s first half.
Continue Reading 2016 Securities Lawsuit Filings Surge to Record Levels

embraerAs I have noted in prior posts (most recently here), in recent months a number of Brazilian companies have been hit with a wave of U.S. securities class action lawsuits. These suits have followed in the wake of corruption scandals and environmental disasters in Brazil. Now yet another Brazilian company has been hit with a U.S. securities class action lawsuit, as aircraft manufacturer Embraer and certain of its directors and officers has been sued in a securities suit following allegations that of the company’s involvement in the payment of bribes to government officials in the Dominican Republic. In addition to being the most recent securities lawsuit filed in the U.S. against a Brazilian company, the new lawsuit also represents the latest example of a securities suit arising in the wake of a bribery investigation.
Continue Reading Yet Another Brazilian Company Hit with U.S. Securities Suit

pwc3Largely as a result of the number of suits filed against smaller companies, the number of securities class action lawsuits filed in 2015 increased for the third year in a row, to the highest level since 2008, according to a new report from PwC. The April 2016 report, entitled “Small Companies, Big Targets: 2015 Securities Litigation Study,” can be found here. The numbers in the PwC report differ slightly from the figures reported in previously released annual securities class action litigation studies by Cornerstone Research (here) and NERA Economic Consulting (here), but the reports are directionally consistent. My own analysis of the 2015 securities litigation filings can be found here.
Continue Reading PwC Report: Surge of Suits Involving Smaller Companies Drove 2015 Securities Suit Filing Increase

globus2Historically, non-U.S. companies listed on U.S. exchanges were sued in securities class action lawsuits less frequently than were listed U.S. companies. For several years now, according to NERA, non-U.S. firms have represented about 16% of all companies listed on the U.S. exchanges, but according to Cornerstone, for the period 1997-2013, the average percentage