Corporations, Securities & Antitrust Practice Group Podcast
While other fields of law are trying to anticipate the future ramifications of the widespread use of drones, robots, and self-driving vehicles, financial markets have already confronted the fact that – for about five years now – automated trading programs have made the majority of all trades in equities and commodities. Automation has substantially reduced the cost of trading, but it has also had profound effects on the structure of financial markets, and has raised questions about its facilitation of allegedly abusive practices. A 2013 documentary, “Ghost Exchange,” and a 2014 best-selling book, Michael Lewis’s Flash Boys, focused public attention on the effects of high-frequency trading (HFT) on market integrity and stability, and helped precipitate a series of aggressive enforcement investigations as well as rulemaking initiatives at financial regulatory agencies in the U.S. and abroad. Our experts reviewed the state of the debate over HFT, and possible paths forward.
Financial Services & E-Commerce Practice Group Podcast
- Brian Mannix, President, Buckland Mill Associates
- Joanne Medero, Managing Director, BlackRock Inc.
Operation Chokepoint is a new initiative of the Obama administration led by the Department of Justice, the FDIC, and the CFPB. It aims to pressure certain industries, primarily payday lending and online lending, by increasing oversight requirements to such levels that it becomes unprofitable for the banks to work with the third-party payment processors who enable these targeted industries to process payments. Other industries that may be targeted by the program include firearms/fireworks sales, ammunition sales, “As Seen on TV” products, gambling, home-based charities, pornography, online pharmaceuticals, and sweepstakes. Our experts shed light on the little-known program, and offered a thorough discussion of the legal and policy implications.
Litigation and Corporations, Securities & Antitrust Practice Groups Podcast
- Charles J. Cooper, Partner, Cooper & Kirk, PLLC
- Iain Murray, Vice President for Strategy, the Competitive Enterprise Institute
- Prof. Todd J. Zywicki, Foundation Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law
Jeffrey B. Wall March 18, 2014
On March 5, 2014, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Halliburton v. Erica P. John Fund, and our expert attended and then reported on the argument. Will the Court continue to recognize the fraud on the market theory? How much reliance is required on the part of the plaintiffs? Will the Court allow introduction of evidence that a defendant’s statements did not affect the price of its stock to rebut a presumption of reliance?
- Jeffrey B. Wall, Special Counsel, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
[Listen now!] Litigation and Corporations, Securities & Antitrust Practice Groups Podcast
Shareholders of Halliburton filed a class action lawsuit arguing that Halliburton falsified its financial statements and misrepresented projected earnings, invoking a “fraud on the market” theory to demonstrate class reliance on Halliburton’s statements. The “fraud on the market” theory assumes that investors have relied on any material misstatements when they purchase a security. The federal district court certified the class and did not allow Halliburton to introduce evidence that the statements did not affect its stock prices. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed. Will the Supreme Court continue to recognize the fraud on the market theory? If so, will the Court allow introduction of evidence that a defendant’s statements did not affect the price of its stock to rebut the presumption of reliance?
- Steven G. Bradbury, Partner, Dechert LLP, and former head of the Office of Legal Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice
- Prof. Michael Klausner, Nancy and Charles Munger Professor of Business and Professor of Law, Stanford Law School