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Protecting Your Founder Equity

Even though you may have the urge to share the potential success with everyone that has helped you along the way and to tell them all about it, there is a right way to do this with both co-founders and non-founders to avoid...more

Quarterly Investment Update - 2nd Quarter 2014

Stock Market Commentary - Global equity markets gained higher ground in the second quarter with volatility falling to levels not seen since 2007. The S&P 500 delivered a 5.2% return for the quarter and has now...more

FINRA Sanctions a Broker for Violating Japanese Insider Trading Law

On July 2, 2014, FINRA announced that it barred a former equity trader from the securities industry based on its finding that he violated Japanese insider trading law by trading in the securities of a Japanese company listed...more

Controversial Florida Case Blocks Creditor from Enforcing Judgment Against Foreign Assets

A recent opinion from Florida's Fourth District Court of Appeal held that a Florida court does not have jurisdiction to compel a judgment debtor to turn over stock certificates located outside the state of Florida to satisfy...more

Hart-Scott-Rodino 2013 Annual Report: Filings Decreased, Transactions Investigated Increased and Enforcement Continues for...

On May 21, 2014, the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice published the Hart-Scott-Rodino Annual Report Fiscal Year 2013 (for the period from October 1, 2012 to September 30, 2013). The Annual Report...more

SEC Orders Securities Exchanges and FINRA to Develop Tick Size Pilot Plan

The Securities and Exchange Commission has issued an order directing certain national securities exchanges and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. to jointly develop and file with the SEC a national market...more

Sale of Clippers Will Cost Sterlings Significant Income Taxes

People who do not think that Donald Sterling is being impacted sufficiently by the NBA fine and being forced to sell the Los Angeles Clippers are not taking into account the significant federal and California income taxes...more

Giving Stock to Your Employees — How and How Much?

Equity grants can be an attractive alternative to cash when compensating employees, consultants, and service providers. Beware, though: if not structured properly, equity grants can cause some nasty consequences for the...more

IRS Begins Section 409A Compliance Initiative

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is getting ready to ramp up enforcement of Section 409A of the Internal Revenue Code. The federal agency recently announced the launch of a new project to assess the level of taxpayer...more

U.S. Supreme Court Decision Will Lead to Intense Scrutiny of ESOP Fiduciaries

The United States Supreme Court issued a decision yesterday that will result in significant changes to employee stock ownership plan ("ESOP") administration and design, which could jeopardize the viability of stand-alone...more

Ravenswood Investment Co., L.P. v. Winmill & Co., C.A. No. 7048-VCN (Del. Ch. May 30, 2014) (Noble, V.C.)

In this decision in a proceeding pursuant to 8 Del. C. § 220, the Court of Chancery held that a corporation cannot condition a stockholder’s access to its nonpublic financial statements on the stockholder’s agreement not to...more

Common Issues Related to the Sale of Gifted Stock

One of the more challenging aspects of managing a development office at a college or university is managing the sale of a gift of company stock. While there is no set criteria for determining when to accept such a gift, or...more

Hushmail: Are Activist Hedge Funds Breaking Bad?

Increasingly, some activist hedge funds are looking to sell their stock positions back to target companies. How should the board respond to hushmail? The Rise and Fall of Greenmail - During the heyday of...more

IRS Issues Revenue Ruling on Applicability of Section 457A to Options and Stock Appreciation Rights

On June 10, 2014, the IRS issued Revenue Ruling 2014-18, which holds that nonqualified stock options, as well as stock-settled stock appreciation rights (SARs), do not constitute nonqualified deferred compensation subject to...more

IRS Ruling Allows Tax-Deferred Stock Rights for Fund Managers

Section 457A of the Internal Revenue Code (the Code) generally restricts the ability of offshore funds and other entities domiciled in tax-indifferent jurisdictions to offer tax-advantaged deferred compensation to U.S....more

Possible Offshore Deferrals for Hedge Fund Managers – IRS Confirms That Certain Stock Options and Stock Appreciation Rights Are...

The Internal Revenue Service (the "IRS") has issued Revenue Ruling 2014-18 (the "Ruling"), which generally confirms that a stock-settled stock option or stock appreciation right that is granted with an exercise/base price of...more

When Should Vesting of Equity Grants Accelerate?

The importance of time-based vesting for equity and/or rights to acquire equity granted to founders and subsequent employees of venture-backed companies should not be understated. Equally important is what events should cause...more

Laidler v. Hesco Bastion Environmental, Inc., C.A. No. 7561-VCG (Del. Ch. May 12, 2014) (Glasscock, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery determined the fair value of the petitioner’s stock in a statutory appraisal proceeding arising from the short-form merger of Hesco Bastion USA, Inc. (the “Company”) into the...more

Eleventh Circuit Upholds Convictions in “Pump-and-Dump” Stock Fraud Scheme

The US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit recently upheld convictions for defendants who engaged in an illegal pump-and-dump stock manipulation scheme. Defendants, who participated with seven others in a conspiracy to...more

Damage Models Create Individualized Issues For Pre-Explosion Subclass Of BP Shareholders, But Present No Impediment For...

The Southern District of Texas recently denied certification of a subclass of BP shareholders who purchased shares prior to the Deepwater Horizon explosion and alleged that misstatements regarding safety improvements caused...more

Changes to the AIM Rules for Companies

On 13 May 2014, the London Stock Exchange (the "Exchange") published AIM Notice 39. The notice provided feedback on AIM Notice 38 (which consulted on proposed changes to the AIM Rules for Companies (the "AIM Rules") and the...more

First Circuit Affirms District Court’s Exclusion of Event Study as Unreliable Under Daubert

In Bricklayers & Trowel Trades Int’l Pension Fund v. Credit Suisse Sec. (USA) LLC, No. 12-1750, 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 8994 (1st Cir. May 14, 2014), the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit affirmed a district...more

Corporate Inversions–Fencing In U.S. Businesses

The U.S. has a tax competitiveness problem – its effective corporate tax rates are among the highest in the world. Once upon a time the U.S. was on the low end, and attracted business and capital. Now that it is on the high...more

SEC Charges Five Co-Conspirators in Reverse Merger Scheme

On May 5, the Securities and Exchange Commission brought charges in the US District Court for the District of New Jersey against a Toronto-based consultant and four associates for running a scheme to illegally reap millions...more

Wall Street Banks, Stock Exchanges and High Frequency Trading Firms Hit With Securities Fraud Class Action

Last month, the City of Providence, Rhode Island filed a first-of-its-kind class action against Wall Street banks, securities exchanges and brokerage firms over alleged violations of federal securities laws stemming from the...more

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