Securities

News & Analysis as of

The Securities Law Crystal Ball

At the beginning of each new year, we find ourselves engaged in discussions of the evolving securities regulatory landscape and the changes that we anticipate may occur. We have done this for many years now. Each January we...more

Annual HSR Merger Notification Threshold Adjustments Announced

On January 19, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced the annual changes to the thresholds of the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act (the HSR Act). These thresholds are adjusted annually based on changes in...more

Your Daily Dose of Financial News

We learned about Navient and its allegedly trouble-filled student-loan servicing practices yesterday. Turns out the issues are not only long-standing, but they bear similarities to the mortgage-lending issues that were at...more

DOL Updates Guidance on Proxy Voting by Plan Fiduciaries

On December 29, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (the “DOL”) released Interpretive Bulletin 2016-1 (“IB 2016-1”) relating to the voting of proxies on securities held in employee benefit plans. IB 2016-1 withdraws the...more

Investment Management Update

SEC Issues Guidance on Mutual Fund Fee Structure - The Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Division of Investment Management recently issued a guidance update addressing disclosure issues and certain procedural...more

Moody’s Settles RMBS/CDO Ratings Claims with DOJ, States

After markets closed on Friday the 13th, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced an $864 million settlement regarding Moody’s credit ratings of residential mortgage-backed securities (“RMBS”) and collateralized debt...more

Supreme Court to Hear Class Action Cases Involving Class Action Waivers and Tolling of Statutes of Limitations

The U.S. Supreme Court recently granted certiorari in class action cases involving: (1) class action waivers in employment contracts; and (2) whether filing of a securities class action tolled a statute of repose. In both...more

New Year, Similar Priorities: SEC Announces 2017 OCIE Areas of Focus

On January 12, 2017 the SEC announced its Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) priorities for the year, including areas of focus for Retail Investors, Senior Investors and Retirement Investments,...more

Final EU Agreement on Draft Prospectus Rules as Part of Capital Markets Union

The Council of the European Union announced that it had reached an agreement with the European Parliament on prospectuses for the issuing and offering of securities. Finalization of the agreement comes after the provisional...more

2016 Year In Review: Securities Litigation And Regulation

2016 was an active year in securities litigation. In the first half of 2016 alone, plaintiffs filed 119 new federal class action securities cases. It was also a busy year for SEC enforcement proceedings, with a record 868...more

Insider Trading in the E.U. and U.S. Markets – An Ocean Apart?

With increasing momentum towards global regulatory convergence – driven predominantly by G20 commitments – it is noteworthy that some important (and practically significant) distinctions remain between the market conduct...more

Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to Settle SEC Disclosure Law Violations - Agrees to Admit Wrongdoing and Pay Penalty for...

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced on Jan. 10, 2017, that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (Port Authority) agreed to admit wrongdoing and pay a $400,000 penalty in connection with...more

Orrick's Financial Industry Week In Review

Financial Industry Developments - Prohibition on Dealing or Investing in Industrial or Commercial Metals - On January 3, 2017, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (the "OCC") finalized a rule that...more

SEC Scores First Muni Issuer's Admission of Wrongdoing

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has admitted wrongdoing and agreed to pay a $400,000 penalty to settle SEC charges that it failed to adequately disclose project risks to investors purchasing $2.3 billion in...more

The Only Color in Gambling is Green—Why Staking is a Security

The Securities Act of 1933’s catchall for defining a security is the “investment contract.” The landmark case, SEC v Howey, explained that “an investment contract for the purposes of the Securities Act means a contract,...more

Three Chinese Citizens Charged with Hacking New York Law Firms

Preet Bharara, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York announced that three Chinese citizens have been charged for attempting to hack into seven law firms that were involved in mergers and acquisitions, in...more

Global Accounting Standards

The Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission Mary Jo White recently commented on the significance of high-quality accounting standards. The speech noted the need to support continued work toward the globally accepted...more

Must A Security Be Written?

In yesterday’s post, I covered some of the differences between the laundry lists of securities found in the California Corporate Securities Law of 1968 and the Securities Act of 1933. Both lists seem to contemplate...more

California Federal Court Holds that U.S. Securities Laws Apply to Sponsored, Unlisted ADRs

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California held on January 4, 2017 that the federal securities laws apply to U.S. transactions in sponsored, but unlisted, American Depositary Receipts (“ADRs”) for a...more

FINRA’s 2017 Regulatory & Exam Priorities

On January 4, new President and CEO Richard Cook issued FINRA’s Annual Regulatory and Examination Priorities Letter. This year’s list in summary is: New for 2017: Targeted electronic off-site reviews “on select...more

Applying the Look-Through Rules in Determining 'Investment Partnership' Status Under Section 721(b) - Tax Update Volume 2017,...

Careful Evaluation and Planning Should Be Undertaken When the Partnership Is Formed and When Assets Are Contributed to Evaluate the Potential Impact of Section 721(b). Many taxpayers choose partnership structures...more

The IRS's Stricter(?) Stance on Regulated Investment Company Investments in Commodities - Tax Update Volume 2017, Issue 1

While the IRS's Proposed Regulations Are Not Yet Effective, RICs Should Carefully Consider Whether Their Portfolios or Policies Run Afoul of the New Rules. In order for a corporation to qualify as a regulated investment...more

Making A List Of Securities And Checking It Twice

California Corporations Code Section 25019 defines “security” not by saying what a security is but by providing examples of numerous types of securities. In this respect, Section 25019 is reminiscent of Section 2(a)(1) of...more

Outcomes of Investing in OTC Stocks

The Division of Economic and Risk Analysis (DERA) of the Securities and Exchange Commission published a study recently that reviews, among other things, the performance of and the returns of investing in OTC stocks. The...more

Hague Securities Convention’s Impact on Secured Transactions Choice-of-Law Rules

Choice-of-law rules for security interests in security entitlements in securities credited to security accounts will change on April 1, 2017 when the Hague Securities Convention comes into effect....more

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