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The Aftermath of Newman Likely to Cause Problems for Prosecutors in Old and New Cases

In what is possibly a harbinger of how other courts will interpret the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit’s landmark insider trading ruling in United States v. Newman, 773 F.3d 438 (2d Cir. 2014), Judge Andrew...more

SEC Files Prime Bank Fraud and Offering Fraud Actions as Administrative Proceedings

The trend of selecting administrative proceedings rather than Federal court by the SEC appears to be continuing. Since last September, for example, the SEC has filed at least seven insider trading cases as administrative...more

Delaware Supreme Court to Chancery: You Have Broad Powers

Books-and-records litigation does not typically grab headlines. In fact, few cases litigated under Section 220 of the Delaware General Corporation Law result in written opinions authored by the Delaware Supreme Court....more

Personal Benefit Test Does Not Apply To Misappropriation Theory of Insider Trading — USAO

In U.S. v. Newman, Nos. 13-1837-cr, 13-1917, 2014 WL 6911278 (2nd Cir. Decided Dec. 10, 2014) the Second Circuit handed prosecutors perhaps the only defeat they have suffered in recent years in an insider trading cases. After...more

In re Family Dollar Stores, Inc.: No Revlon Duty to Seek Better Terms From Competing Bidder

Last month, in In re: Family Dollar Stores, Inc. Stockholder Litigation, a Delaware Chancery judge rejected the efforts of certain shareholders of Family Dollar Stores, Inc., to prevent Family Tree’s shareholders from voting...more

Private Equity Fund Adviser Settles with SEC

Earlier this year, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced plans to expand its task force examining private equity investment advisers. As discussed in the Spring 2014 issue of Expect Focus (“Private Equity:...more

Court of Appeals Deals Blow to Government's Insider Trading Program

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals recently dealt a harsh blow to the government's insider trading program with a ruling that limits the range of those who can be charged with insider trading violations. In vacating the...more

Southern District Dismisses Complaints Against China North Director and Consultant

On December 10, a New York district court judge dismissed a securities fraud class action brought by investors in China North East Petroleum Holdings, Ltd. against former director Robert Bruce (and others) on the ground that...more

Forum Selection Bylaws Gain Additional Support in California

In adopting an exclusive forum selection bylaw, companies can avoid the cost and complication of multi-forum litigation after an M&A transaction. In response to the wasteful and burdensome trend of multi-forum...more

Ninth Circuit Clarifies Pleading Standard for Securities-Fraud Claims

The Ninth Circuit recently joined the debate on whether the heightened pleading standard of Fed. R. Civ. P. 9(b) or the more relaxed notice-pleading standard of Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a) applies to pleading loss causation for a...more

SEC Condemns Breach Of Client Confidences While Offering Possible Bounties For Breaches

Yesterday, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced that it had “charged a California-based attorney and his wife with insider trading on confidential information obtained from a corporate client.” According to the...more

No Auction Required – Delaware Supreme Court Affirms Board Flexibility under Revlon

Ruling that an active solicitation process is not necessarily required for a target board of directors to satisfy its fiduciary duties in a change of control transaction, the Delaware Supreme Court overturned a preliminary...more

Bayens v Kinross Gold Corporation – Misrepresentation Claims in Securities Class Actions

Ontario's statutory regime for secondary market liability came into effect in 2006 as a result of amendments to the Securities Act (Ontario) (the OSA), creating a statutory cause of action for deficient market disclosure....more

Investment Management Update

In This Issue: - SEC Announces First-of-Its-Kind Whistleblower Award To an Audit and Compliance Professional - SEC Issues No-Action Letter To Allow for Amendment of a Sub-Advisory Agreement without Shareholder...more

Ninth Circuit Requires Particularity In All Elements Of Securities Fraud Pleading

Sometimes, I find it useful to take a step back and review the legal standard applicable to securities fraud claims under Section 10(b) and Rule 10b-5. To stay in court, and securities litigation all about surviving motions...more

Second Circuit Clarifies a Heightened Standard for Insider Trading Convictions

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently held that, in order to convict a tippee for insider trading under Section 10(b) of the Securities Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5, the government must prove beyond a...more

No Knowledge, No Jail: Second Circuit Clarifies Scope of Tippee Insider Trading Liability

On December 10, 2014, the Second Circuit issued an important decision (U.S. v. Newman, No. 13-1837, 2014 WL 6911278 (2d Cir. Dec. 10, 2014)) that will make it more difficult in that Circuit for prosecutors, and most likely...more

SEC Continues To Focus On Microcap Fraud

The Commission continues to focus on microcap fraud actions with two new manipulation cases involving penny stocks. In one a former registered representative acted as an unregistered broker and then engaged in a series of...more

Platinum Partners Value Arbitrage Fund L.P. v. Echo Therapeutics, Inc., C.A. No. 10303-VCN (Del. Ch. Nov. 14, 2014) (Noble, V.C.)

In this letter opinion, the Court of Chancery denied a motion to expedite proceedings in which a stockholder sought to call a special meeting to remove a majority of the corporation’s directors....more

In re Novell, Inc. S’holder Litig., C.A. No. 6032 (Del. Ch. Nov. 25, 2014) (Noble, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery granted summary judgment in favor of defendants on claims alleging that directors acted in bad faith by favoring a bidder in a sale process for reasons other than the pursuit...more

Knowledge of Benefit Required to Convict Insider Trading Tippees

In its important ruling on what the government must prove in a criminal insider trading prosecution, the Second Circuit reversed the convictions of two portfolio managers — throwing out their cases completely, with no new...more

Second Circuit Redefines “Personal Benefit” in Insider Trading Case

Breaking from precedent, the Second Circuit sets a new standard for the personal benefit element of insider trader liability. On December 10, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversed...more

2nd Circuit Narrows Scope of Tippee Liability for Insider Trading

The US Second Circuit this Wednesday narrowed the scope of “tippee” liability for insider trading, rejecting the “doctrinal novelty” of recent government prosecution theories. In United State v. Newman, Nos. 13-1837-cr c/w...more

Court Clarifies Law on Enforceability of Obligations of Non-Signatories in Private Mergers

In a fact-specific case with potential ramifications for future mergers under Delaware law, Cigna Health and Life Insurance Co., a preferred stockholder of Audax Health Solutions Inc., whose shares were extinguished by a...more

Second Circuit Clarifies Elements of Tippee Liability for Insider Trading

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently clarified the elements required to hold a tippee liable for insider trading: a tippee cannot be held liable unless the Government proves that the tippee knew both (i)...more

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