United States Supreme Court Limits Extraterritorial Reach Of Private Federal Securities Claims

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In Morrison v. National Australia Bank Ltd., 2010 WL 2518523 (U.S. Jun. 24, 2010), the United States Supreme Court held that domestic courts lack jurisdiction over claims brought by private citizens pursuant to Section 10(b) of Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Exchange Act’), 15 U.S.C. § 78j(b), and Securities & Exchange Commission Rule 10b-5, 17 C.F.R. § 240.10b-5, against corporations whose stock is traded exclusively in foreign exchanges. The decision, written by Justice Scalia on behalf of a five justice majority, departs from decades of precedent from the United States Courts of Appeals that allowed such claims to be brought when substantial aspects of the misconduct occurred in the United States or when the misconduct had a substantial effect on U.S. investors.

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