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 previously noted, even though the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) does not contain a private right of action, plaintiffs’ attorneys have fashioned an FCPA-based claim of sorts in the form of a follow-on shareholder claim alleging either mismanagement or misrepresentation with respect to the alleged bribery or corrupt activity. A  July 10, 2019 memo by attorneys from the DLA Piper law firm (here) takes a look at securities class action lawsuits filed based on FCPA allegations. As the authors note, the underlying FCPA allegations “do not necessarily make for a successful securities class action,” as most FCPA-related securities fraud claims “are dismissed.” As discussed below, a July 12, 2019 dismissal ruling in the FCPA-related Cemex securities class action illustrates both the kind of securities claims that can arise in the wake of FCPA-related allegations and also the hurdles that these kinds of claims face.
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One of the most interesting and significant developments in the corporate and securities litigation arena has been the rise of collective investor litigation outside the United States, as I have discussed in prior posts. This rising tide of litigation has not only included increased numbers of legal actions in a number of different jurisdictions but also has included several substantial settlements, including among others the massive settlements in the Fortis case and in the RBS case. In an updated report July 2019 report entitled “Global Securities Litigation Trends: July 2019 Update” (here), the Dechert law firm takes a detailed look at the “sea change” that has taken place in collective investor litigation in recent years, as a result of which, according to the report, we have entered “a new era of global securities litigation.”
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Paul Ferrillo

In the following guest post, Paul Ferrillo takes a look at the current state of the D&O insurance market and provides his views on the importance of a healthy D&O market for corporate America. Paul is a shareholder in the Greenberg Traurig law firm’s Cybersecurity, Privacy, and Crisis Management Practice. I would like to thank Paul for his willingness to allow me to publish his 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 submit a guest post. Here is Paul’s article.
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One of the most-watched corporate and securities litigation trends in recent years has been the incidence of D&O claims after companies experience data breaches. Although there have been a number of high profile claims along the way, the volume of data breach-related D&O claims has never quite lived up to the hype. Just the same, these kinds of claims have continued to be filed. The most recent case is a securities class action lawsuit that has now been filed against educational services company Chegg, Inc., after its recent announcement of a data breach involving customer data. The Chegg lawsuit, filed on September 27, 2018 in the Northern District of California, can be found here.
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On July 13, 2018, the Amsterdam Court of Appeals finally approved the €1.3 billion ($1.5 billion) settlement of a series of shareholder claims against Fortis in the wake of the global financial crisis. The settlement, which had first been announced in March 2016 by Ageas, Fortis’s successor in interest, faced a number of judicial objections and concerns, resulting in changes to the settlement as originally proposed. According to a July 27, 2018 Law 360 article by Jonathan Richman of the Proskauer law firm and Ianika Tzankova of Tilburg University (here), the court’s recent approval “again shows” that the Dutch settlement procedure “remains a viable settlement vehicle for companies wishing to resolve transnational problems on a classwide, opt-out basis.” On the other hand, claimants’ attorneys have questioned whether the court’s rulings on class distribution and attorneys’ fees could discourage institutional investors from seeking to use the Dutch settlement procedures.
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The world of directors’ and officers’ liability is always dynamic, but 2017 was a particularly eventful year in the D&O liability arena. The year’s many developments have significant implications for what may lie ahead in 2018 – and possibly for years to come. I have set out below the Top Ten D&O stories of 2017, with an eye to these future possibilities.
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For almost the entire time that there have even been federal securities laws, the U.S. Supreme Court only rarely and infrequently agreed to take up cases arising securities cases. Until recently, years would pass between the times that securities cases appeared on the Supreme Court’s docket. For some reason, beginning around the middle of the last decade, the Court has become increasingly willing to take up securities cases. The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2017-2018 term, which commences on Monday, is no exception to this recent trend. There are three important securities cases on the Court’s docket for the upcoming term, and these cases could have, both individually and collectively, a significant impact on many securities law cases and on securities litigation in general.
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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.
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paul-weiss-large-300x53President Trump’s nomination of Tenth Circuit Justice Neil Gorsuch to fill the Supreme Court seat vacated by the late Justice Antonin Scalia has attracted a great deal of commentary and raised a host of questions about the proposed new Justice’s views on a variety of different subjects. In the following guest post, attorneys from the Paul Weiss law firm take a look at the proposed Justice’s past writings and opinions on securities litigation and agency deference questions. I would like to thank the Paul Weiss attorneys for allowing me to publish their 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 Paul Weiss attorneys’ guest post.
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