In the current economic environment, companies are wrestling with a host of macroeconomic issues, including rising interest rates, economic inflation, continuing labor shortages, and the war in Ukraine. In addition, another issue companies are facing in the wake of the pandemic is supply chain disruption, which continues to challenge some companies. In the latest sign

As I have noted in prior posts (most recently here), a recurring type of pandemic-related securities suit involves companies whose fortunes prospered at the outset of the pandemic but whose performance sagged as the coronavirus outbreak evolved. The latest lawsuit of this type is the securities suit filed earlier this week against the retailer Target Corp., in which the plaintiffs allege that the surge in consumer demand at the outset of the pandemic led the company to overstock inventory, causing an inventory overhang that later undercut the company’s financial performance. A copy of the March 29, 2023, complaint against Target can be found here.

Continue Reading Target Hit with Securities Suit Over Pandemic-Related Inventory Overhang

At the beginning of the year, when I surveyed the D&O claims landscape and predicted the factors that I thought might drive D&O claims volume in 2023, one set of factors I projected might make significant contributions to the number of claims to be filed during the year were the number of macroeconomic challenges – for example, rising interest rates, economic inflation, labor supply disruption, and the war in Ukraine. The recent failure of Silicon Valley Bank and the ensuing securities litigation provides one illustration of how these macro factors can translate into D&O claims.

Now, in the latest illustration of these forces at work, investors have filed a securities lawsuit against the organic foods company United Natural Foods, following the company’s recent disappointing earnings announcement in which the company disclosed a decline in profitability, despite increasing sales, due to inflationary pressures. A copy of the March 20, 2023, lawsuit against United Natural Foods can be found here.

Continue Reading Inflation Hits Organic Food Company’s Quarterly Results, Draws Securities Suit

Businesses these days face a wide variety of headwinds – rising interest rates, economic inflation, supply chain and labor supply disruptions, war in Ukraine, even continued disruptions from COVID – that are interfering with business operations and affecting financial performance. In some instances, these macroeconomic factors are translating into securities litigation. In the latest example of this phenomenon, a plaintiff shareholder has sued video display systems company Daktronics following the company’s announcement that supply chain disruptions, labor shortages, and shutdowns in China caused a decline in the company’s sales, which led to a later announcement of a “substantial doubt” of the company’s ability to continue as a going concern. The December 21, 2022, complaint can be found here.
Continue Reading Video Display Company Hit with Supply Chain-Related Securities Suit

Frank Hülsberg

Burkhard Fassbach

This past summer, the German legislature passed the Supply Chain Act, in order to require German businesses to comply with due diligence obligations to improve compliance with human rights and material standards within supply chains. In the following guest post, Frank Hülsberg, a Chartered Accountant and Tax Advisor in Düsseldorf, Partner Advisory and Member of the Executive Board at Grant Thornton AG Wirtschaftsprüfungsgesellschaft in Germany, and Burkhard Fassbach, a Senior Manager in the Governance, Risk, Compliance & Technology department at Grant Thornton in Frankfurt, review the Act’s requirements and consider its implications. I would like to thank Frank and Burkhard for allowing me to publish this article as a guest post 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 Frank and Burkhard’s article.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Focus on ESG: The German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act

Regular readers know that in recent months I have been following two securities class action litigation filing trends: first, the incidence of COVID-19-related securities suit filings,  and, second, the influx of claims relating to macroeconomic factors, including, among other things, global supply chain disruption (which was itself caused at least in part by the coronavirus). In a lawsuit that includes allegations that involve both of these trends, a plaintiff shareholder has filed a securities class action lawsuit against the women’s online apparel company, Torrid Holdings, Inc. As discussed below, the complaint alleges, among other things, that in connection with the company’s July 2021 IPO, the company soft-pedaled the impact on the company from COVID-19 and from supply chain disruptions. A copy of the plaintiff’s November 16, 2022 complaint can be found here.
Continue Reading Women’s Apparel Company Hit with COVID and Supply Chain-Related Securities Suit

In the current difficult business environment, many businesses face a broad array of daunting business challenges, including economic inflation, rising interest rates, supply chain and labor supply disruptions, the continuing threat of COVID-19 shutdowns, and the war in Ukraine. These various circumstances not only represent potential operational hurdles they may also involve increased litigation risk as well – as I have noted on previous posts (for example, here) these various business challenges can translate into litigation, as well. In the latest example of this phenomenon, earlier this week a plaintiff shareholder launched a securities class action lawsuit against the healthcare apparel firm FIGS, Inc. relating to the increased supply chain costs the company experienced since its June 2021 IPO. A copy of the November 1, 2022 complaint against the company can be found here.
Continue Reading Apparel Company Hit with Supply Chain-Related Securities Lawsuit

As I have noted in recent posts (here, for example), SPAC-related securities suit filings continue to accumulate and represent a significant current securities litigation phenomenon. But while the number of suits continues to mount, relatively few of these cases have yet reached the dismissal stage. In a recent ruling, however, the defendant company’s motion to dismiss in a SPAC-related securities suit was substantially denied as to the company itself and its top executives. In particular, the claims based on allegations that the company, Romeo Power, and its senior officials made supply chain misrepresentations were sustained, though the related claims against three former executives of the SPAC with which Romeo had merged were dismissed. A copy of the June 2, 2022 opinion in the case can be found here.
Continue Reading Dismissal Denied in SPAC-Related Securities Suit Alleging Supply Chain Misrepresentations

The pace of SPAC-related securities lawsuit filings recently has perceptibly increased. Earlier this week, I noted two SPAC-related securities class action lawsuits that had been filed in the preceding days. Following my publication of that earlier post, plaintiffs’ lawyers filed two more SPAC-related securities suits, adding to the growing numbers of SPAC-related securities suits that have been filed this year. As discussed below, the likelihood is that we will continue to see further SPAC-related securities suit filings in the months ahead.
Continue Reading Two More Post-SPAC-Merger Companies Hit with Securities Suits

In my recent year-end wrap up of D&O issues, I speculated that certain current conditions – supply chain woes, labor supply constraints, and economic inflation – could lead to a rash of D&O claims. I actually had examples in my wrap-up article of D&O claims arising from supply chain issues and labor supply concerns, but I didn’t have any inflation-related D&O claims examples – until now. The securities class action lawsuit filed last week against Vertiv Holdings is directly related to the company’s recent inflation-caused earnings miss and ensuing stock price drop. As discussed below, there could be more inflation-related D&O claims to come. A copy of the March 24, 2022 complaint against Vertiv can be found here.
Continue Reading Can Economic Inflation Really Lead to D&O Claims? Yup. Here’s How.