Mega Settlements Drive 2016 Securities Class Actions


Publish Date:
March 15, 2017
Wealth Management - The Daily Brief
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Securities class action settlements set a record in 2016, Ron Paul was named Goldco’s chief ambassador, and Mike Piazza (no, not that Mike Piazza) leaves Merrill Lynch for Raymond James.

Last year, U.S. courts saw a record 85 securities class action settlements, five more than in 2015 and a substantial increase over 2011 through 2014, according to an annual study by Cornerstone Research. Total settlement dollars were nearly $6 billion, almost double the amount in 2015 and the second highest in 10 years. That was driven by a record number of mega settlements—those totaling $100 million or more—which accounted for 81 percent of all settlement dollars in 2016, Cornerstone says. The median mega settlement in 2016 was $318 million, almost twice the median in 2015. “These data continue to emphasize the importance of mega cases and mega settlements, often concentrated in industries with large market capitalization components, like pharmaceuticals and finance,” observed Joseph Grundfest, Professor of Law and Business at Stanford Law School. “Class action securities fraud litigation is a hit-driven business in which a small number of cases regularly account for the lion’s share of plaintiff recoveries.”

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