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Full-Text Articles in Securities Law

From Public Policy To Materiality: Non-Financial Reporting, Shareholder Engagement, And Rule 14a-8’S Ordinary Business Exception, Virginia Harper Ho Nov 2019

From Public Policy To Materiality: Non-Financial Reporting, Shareholder Engagement, And Rule 14a-8’S Ordinary Business Exception, Virginia Harper Ho

Washington and Lee Law Review

This article builds upon the author's remarks at the 2018-2019 Lara D. Gass Annual Symposium: Civil Rights and Shareholder Activism at Washington and Lee University School of Law, February 15, 2019.

In 2017, shareholder proposals urging corporate boards to report on their climate-related risk made headlines when they earned majority support from investors at ExxonMobil, Occidental Petroleum, and PPL. The key to this historic vote was the support of Blackrock, State Street, and Vanguard, which broke with management and cast their votes behind the proposals. The 2018 proxy season saw several more climate-related proposals earn majority support, and in ...


Crashing The Boards: A Comparative Analysis Of The Boxing Out Of Women On Boards In The United States And Canada, Diana C. Nicholls Mutter Oct 2019

Crashing The Boards: A Comparative Analysis Of The Boxing Out Of Women On Boards In The United States And Canada, Diana C. Nicholls Mutter

The Journal of Business, Entrepreneurship & the Law

This paper will first provide a critical, comparative look at the Canadian and the federal American responses to the under-representation of women on boards of large, publicly traded corporations. There will be a discussion about the competing conceptions which emerge in addressing the regulation of women on boards in the United States and Canada and why each jurisdiction implemented its policy when it did. The conceptions arising out of questions about under-representation of women on boards tend to fall within two categories: business case rationales and normative rationales. Given the competing conceptions of this issue, this paper will attempt to ...


Boilerplate And The Impact Of Disclosure In Securities Dealmaking, Jeremy Mcclane Jan 2019

Boilerplate And The Impact Of Disclosure In Securities Dealmaking, Jeremy Mcclane

Vanderbilt Law Review

Capital markets dealmaking, like many kinds of business transactions, is built on a foundation of copied and recycled language what many call boilerplate. Regulators and the bar periodically call for less reliance on boilerplate, but despite these pressures, boilerplate remains a fixture of ever-growing securities disclosures. This Article explores why boilerplate persists and how it affects investors, showing that boilerplate may have a more complex role than commonly recognized. This Article does so by developing a theory on the effect of boilerplate in securities disclosure-a context that is little studied despite a wealth of literature on boilerplate in other settings--and ...


Dialectical Regulation, Robert B. Ahdieh Jun 2018

Dialectical Regulation, Robert B. Ahdieh

Robert B. Ahdieh

While theories of regulation abound, woefully inadequate attention has been given to growing patterns of "intersystemic" and "dialectical" regulation in the world today. In this rapidly expanding universe of interactions, independent regulatory agencies, born of autonomous jurisdictions, nonetheless face a combination of jurisdictional overlap with, and regulatory dependence on, one another. Here, the cross-jurisdictional interaction of regulators is no longer the voluntary interaction embraced by transnationalists; it is, instead, an unavoidable reality of acknowledgement and engagement, potentially culminating in the integration of discrete sets of regulatory rules into a collective whole.

Such patterns of regulatory engagement are increasingly evident, across ...


Enforcing The Bargain V. Materiality Requirement: The Future Of Disclosure-Only Settlements Post-Trulia, Hao Jiang May 2018

Enforcing The Bargain V. Materiality Requirement: The Future Of Disclosure-Only Settlements Post-Trulia, Hao Jiang

Pace Law Review

In In re Trulia, Inc. Stockholder Litigation, the Delaware Court of Chancery broke away from its tradition of routinely approving disclosure-only settlements and required disclosures to be material in order to cure the conflict of interest between plaintiff’s counsel and the plaintiff class. I argue that fairness of settlement is the only standard in approving class action settlements and fairness will not be achieved by requiring materiality. Shareholders are legally entitled to all material information, as the board’s fiduciary duty dictates. Thus, material disclosures are enforcement of a legal duty that is no consideration for the release of ...


Theories And Solutions On Wolf Pack Activism, Kimberly Goldman May 2018

Theories And Solutions On Wolf Pack Activism, Kimberly Goldman

Michigan Business & Entrepreneurial Law Review

Section I will describe the key players involved in wolf pack activism and their conflicting motives, including both the members of wolf packs and those affected by them. Given that not all shareholders have common interests, this will include an analysis of the motives of various types of shareholders and an analysis of how these diverse motives may affect the wealth sustainability of companies. Section II will explain the phenomenon of wolf packs in corporate governance by describing the circumstances that lead to their formation and the various regulations (or lack thereof) pertaining to them. Section III will describe divergent ...


Is Say On Pay All About Pay? The Impact Of Firm Performance, Jill E. Fisch, Darius Palia, Steven Davidoff Solomon Oct 2017

Is Say On Pay All About Pay? The Impact Of Firm Performance, Jill E. Fisch, Darius Palia, Steven Davidoff Solomon

Steven M. Davidoff Solomon

The Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 mandated a number of regulatory reforms including a requirement that large U.S. public companies provide their shareholders with the opportunity to cast a non-binding vote on executive compensation. The “say on pay” vote was designed to rein in excessive levels of executive compensation and to encourage boards to adopt compensation structures that tie executive pay more closely to performance. Although the literature is mixed, many studies question whether the statute has had the desired effect. Shareholders at most companies overwhelmingly approve the compensation packages, and pay levels continue to be high. Although a lack ...


Who Bleeds When The Wolves Bite? A Flesh-And-Blood Perspective On Hedge Fund Activism And Our Strange Corporate Governance System, Leo E. Strine Jr. Apr 2017

Who Bleeds When The Wolves Bite? A Flesh-And-Blood Perspective On Hedge Fund Activism And Our Strange Corporate Governance System, Leo E. Strine Jr.

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This paper examines the effects of hedge fund activism and so-called wolf pack activity on the ordinary human beings—the human investors—who fund our capital markets but who, as indirect of owners of corporate equity, have only limited direct power to ensure that the capital they contribute is deployed to serve their welfare and in turn the broader social good.

Most human investors in fact depend much more on their labor than on their equity for their wealth and therefore care deeply about whether our corporate governance system creates incentives for corporations to create and sustain jobs for them ...


Carrot Or Stick? The Shift From Voluntary To Mandatory Disclosure Of Risk Factors, Karen K. Nelson, Adam C. Pritchard Jun 2016

Carrot Or Stick? The Shift From Voluntary To Mandatory Disclosure Of Risk Factors, Karen K. Nelson, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

This study investigates risk factor disclosures, examining both the voluntary, incentive-based disclosure regime provided by the safe harbor provision of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act as well as the SEC's subsequent mandate of these disclosures. Firms subject to greater litigation risk disclose more risk factors, update the language more from year to year, and use more readable language than firms with lower litigation risk. These differences in the quality of disclosure are pronounced in the voluntary disclosure regime, but converge following the SEC mandate as low-risk firms improved the quality of their risk factor disclosures. Consistent with these ...


Chinese Regulation Of Issuer Earnings Forecasts: Recommendations For An Ex Ante Legal Framework, Chengxi Yao Mar 2016

Chinese Regulation Of Issuer Earnings Forecasts: Recommendations For An Ex Ante Legal Framework, Chengxi Yao

William & Mary Business Law Review

No abstract provided.


Sec Investigations And Securities Class Actions: An Empirical Comparison, Stephen J. Choi, Adam C. Pritchard Mar 2016

Sec Investigations And Securities Class Actions: An Empirical Comparison, Stephen J. Choi, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

Using actions with both an SEC investigation and a class action as our baseline, we compare the targeting of SEC-only investigations with class-action-only lawsuits. Looking at measures of information asymmetry, we find that investors in the market perceive greater information asymmetry following the public announcement of the underlying violation for class-action-only lawsuits compared with SEC-only investigations. Turning to sanctions, we find that the incidence of top officer resignation is greater for class-action-only lawsuits relative to SEC-only investigations. Our findings are consistent with the private enforcement targeting disclosure violations at least as precisely as (if not more so than) SEC enforcement.


Open Sesame: The Myth Of Alibaba's Extreme Corporate Governance And Control, Yu-Hsin Lin, Thomas Mehaffy Jan 2016

Open Sesame: The Myth Of Alibaba's Extreme Corporate Governance And Control, Yu-Hsin Lin, Thomas Mehaffy

Brooklyn Journal of Corporate, Financial & Commercial Law

In September 2014, Alibaba Group Holding Limited (Alibaba) successfully launched a $25 billion initial public offering (IPO), the largest IPO ever, on New York Stock Exchange. Alibaba’s IPO success witnessed a wave among Chinese Internet companies to raise capital in U.S capital markets. A significant number of these companies have employed a novel, but poorly understood corporate ownership and control mechanism—the variable interest entity (VIE) structure and/or the disproportional control structure. The VIE structure was created in response to the Chinese restriction on foreign investments; however, it carries the risk of being declared illegal under Chinese ...


Changing The Rules Of The Game: Beyond Disclosure Framework For Securities Regulation, Jena Martin Sep 2015

Changing The Rules Of The Game: Beyond Disclosure Framework For Securities Regulation, Jena Martin

West Virginia Law Review

No abstract provided.


E-Commerce, Cyber, And Electronic Payment System Risks: Lessons From Paypal, Lawrence J. Trautman Aug 2015

E-Commerce, Cyber, And Electronic Payment System Risks: Lessons From Paypal, Lawrence J. Trautman

Lawrence J. Trautman Sr.

By now, almost without exception, every business has an internet presence, and is likely engaged in e-commerce. What are the major risks perceived by those engaged in e-commerce and electronic payment systems? What potential risks, if they become reality, may cause substantial increases in operating costs or threaten the very survival of the enterprise? This article utilizes the relevant annual report disclosures from eBay (parent of PayPal), along with other eBay and PayPal documents, as a potentially powerful teaching device. Most of the descriptive language to follow is excerpted directly from eBay’s regulatory filings. My additions include weaving these ...


Liability For Insider Trading: Expansion Of Liability In Rule 10b-5 Cases, Arthur J. Marinelli Jul 2015

Liability For Insider Trading: Expansion Of Liability In Rule 10b-5 Cases, Arthur J. Marinelli

Akron Law Review

This article will examine the recent litigation developments of Section 10 and Rule 10-b in Carpenter v. United States and in Basic, Inc. v. Levinson. The origins and developments of the misappropriation theory and the application of the mail fraud statutes as applied to Section 10 will also be discussed. Finally, the duty of disclosure and the timing of disclosure of merger negotiations, along with the fraud-on-the-market theory of civil liability under Rule 10b-5, will be explored in the context of the Basic case.


Dirks And The Genesis Of Personal Benefit, Adam C. Pritchard Jun 2015

Dirks And The Genesis Of Personal Benefit, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

In United States v. Newman, the Second Circuit overturned the insider trading convictions of two hedge fund managers who received material nonpublic information from public companies via an extended tipping chain. The Newman court interpreted the Supreme Court's decision in Dirks v. SEC as requiring that the government prove: (1) that the tippee knew that the tipper was disclosing the information in exchange for a personal benefit; and (2) that if the personal benefit does not involve a quid pro quo to the tipper, that the disclosure arise from a "meaningfully close personal relationship" with the recipient of the ...


The Bankruptcy Of The Securities Market Paradigm, Stephen P. Wink Jan 2015

The Bankruptcy Of The Securities Market Paradigm, Stephen P. Wink

Stephen P Wink

The current paradigm of securities market regulation in the United States rests on the Efficient Market Hypothesis, a theory that has been largely discredited by modern economics and behavioral finance. The Efficient Market Hypothesis assumes that the price of securities in the market accurately incorporates and reflects all available material information. Building on this notion, regulators have assumed that better information leads to healthier markets—and therefore regulation that enhances disclosure and transparency leads to healthier markets. Over time, this reasoning has elevated these tools, disclosure and transparency, to ends in themselves, despite the flaws in the Efficient Market Hypothesis ...


Broker-Dealers And Investment Advisers: A Behaviorial-Economics Analysis Of Competing Suggestions For Reform, Polina Demina Dec 2014

Broker-Dealers And Investment Advisers: A Behaviorial-Economics Analysis Of Competing Suggestions For Reform, Polina Demina

Michigan Law Review

For the average investor trying to save for retirement or a child’s college fund, the world of investing has become increasingly complex. These retail investors must turn more frequently to financial intermediaries, such as broker-dealers and investment advisers, to get sound investment advice. Such intermediaries perform different duties for their clients, however. The investment adviser owes his client a fiduciary duty of care and therefore must provide financial advice that is in the client’s best interests, while the broker-dealer must merely provide advice that is suitable to the client’s interests—a lower standard than the fiduciary duty ...


Halliburton, Basic And Fraud On The Market: The Need For A New Paradigm, Charles W. Murdock Sep 2014

Halliburton, Basic And Fraud On The Market: The Need For A New Paradigm, Charles W. Murdock

Charles W. Murdock

Summary: Halliburton, Basic and Fraud on the Market: The Need for a New Paradigm

If defrauded securities plaintiffs cannot bring a class-action lawsuit, there often will be no effective remedy since the amount at stake for individual plaintiffs is not sufficient to warrant the substantial costs of litigation. To surmount the problem of individualized reliance and establish commonality, federal courts for twenty-five years have been employing the Basic fraud-on-the-market theory which posits that, in an efficient market, investors rely on the integrity of the market price.

While class certification at one time was a matter of course, today it is ...


Reconciling Tax Law And Securities Regulation, Omri Marian Sep 2014

Reconciling Tax Law And Securities Regulation, Omri Marian

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Issuers in registered securities offerings must disclose the expected tax consequences to investors investing in the offered securities (“nonfinancial tax disclosure”). This Article advances three arguments regarding nonfinancial tax disclosures. First, nonfinancial tax disclosure practice, as the Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) has sanctioned it, does not fulfill its intended regulatory purposes. Currently, nonfinancial tax disclosures provide irrelevant information, sometimes fail to provide material information, create unnecessary transaction costs, and divert valuable administrative resources to the enforcement of largely-meaningless requirements. Second, the practical reason for this failure is the SEC and tax practitioners’ unsuccessful attempt to address investors’ heterogeneous ...


Limits Of Disclosure, Steven M. Davidoff, Claire A. Hill Jul 2014

Limits Of Disclosure, Steven M. Davidoff, Claire A. Hill

Steven Davidoff Solomon

One big focus of attention, criticism, and proposals for reform in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis has been securities disclosure. Many commentators have emphasized the complexity of the securities being sold, arguing that no one could understand the disclosure. Some observers have noted that disclosures were sometimes false or incomplete. What follows these issues, to some commentators, is that, whatever other lessons we may learn from the crisis, we need to improve disclosure. How should it be improved? Commentators often lament the frailties of human understanding, notably including those of everyday retail investors—people who do not understand ...


E-Commerce And Electronic Payment System Risks: Lessons From Paypal, Lawrence J. Trautman Jun 2014

E-Commerce And Electronic Payment System Risks: Lessons From Paypal, Lawrence J. Trautman

Lawrence J. Trautman Sr.

What are the major risks perceived by those engaged in e-commerce and electronic payment systems? What development risks, if they become reality, may cause substantial increases in operating costs or threaten the very survival of the enterprise? This article utilizes the relevant annual report disclosures from eBay (parent of PayPal), along with other eBay and PayPal documents, as a potentially powerful teaching device. Most of the descriptive language to follow is excerpted directly from eBay’s regulatory filings. My additions include weaving these materials into a logical presentation and providing supplemental sources for those who desire a deeper look (usually ...


The Timing And Source Of Regulation, Frank Partnoy Mar 2014

The Timing And Source Of Regulation, Frank Partnoy

Seattle University Law Review

The distinction between specific concrete rules and general abstract principles has engaged legal theorists for decades. This rules–principles distinction has also become increasingly important in corporate and securities law, as well as financial market regulation. This Article adds two important variables to the rules–principles debate: timing and source. Although these two variables are relevant to legal theory generally, the specific goal here is not to address and engage the rules versus principles literature directly. Rather, the goal here is to ask whether the debate about financial market regulation might benefit from a more transparent analysis of temporal and ...


E-Commerce And Electronic Payment System Risks: Lessons From Paypal, Lawrence J. Trautman Oct 2013

E-Commerce And Electronic Payment System Risks: Lessons From Paypal, Lawrence J. Trautman

Lawrence J. Trautman Sr.

What are the major risks perceived by those engaged in e-commerce and electronic payment systems? What development risks, if they become reality, may cause substantial increases in operating costs or threaten the very survival of the enterprise? This article utilizes the relevant annual report disclosures from eBay (parent of PayPal), along with other eBay and PayPal documents, as a potentially powerful teaching device. Most of the descriptive language to follow is excerpted directly from eBay’s regulatory filings. My additions include weaving these materials into a logical presentation and providing supplemental sources for those who desire a deeper look (usually ...


The Cost Of Securities Fraud, Urska Velikonja May 2013

The Cost Of Securities Fraud, Urska Velikonja

William & Mary Law Review

Under the dominant account, fraudulent financial reporting by public firms harms the firms' shareholders and, more generally, capital markets. This Article contends that the account is incomplete. In addition to undermining investor confidence, misreporting distorts economic decision making by all firms, both those committing fraud and those not. False information impairs risk assessment by those who provide human or financial capital to fraudulent firms, the firms' suppliers and customers, and thus misdirects capital and labor to subpar projects. Efforts to hide fraud and avoid detection further distort fraudulent firms' business decisions, as well as decisions by their rivals, who mimic ...


Limits Of Disclosure, Steven M. Davidoff, Claire A. Hill Mar 2013

Limits Of Disclosure, Steven M. Davidoff, Claire A. Hill

Seattle University Law Review

One big focus of attention, criticism, and proposals for reform in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis has been securities disclosure. Many commentators have emphasized the complexity of the securities being sold, arguing that no one could understand the disclosure. Some observers have noted that disclosures were sometimes false or incomplete. What follows these issues, to some commentators, is that, whatever other lessons we may learn from the crisis, we need to improve disclosure. How should it be improved? Commentators often lament the frailties of human understanding, notably including those of everyday retail investors—people who do not understand ...


Revisiting 'Truth In Securities Revisited': Abolishing Ipos And Harnessing Private Markets In The Public Good, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2013

Revisiting 'Truth In Securities Revisited': Abolishing Ipos And Harnessing Private Markets In The Public Good, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

My thesis is that the transition between private- and public-company status could be less bumpy if we unify the public-private dividing line under the Securities Act and Exchange Act. The insight builds on Cohen's thought experiment where Congress first enacted the Exchange Act. My proposed public-private standard would take the company-registration model to its logical conclusion. The customary path to public-company status is through an IPO, typically with simultaneous listing of the shares on an exchange. There is nothing about public offerings, however, that makes them inherently antecedent to public-company status. What if companies became public, with required periodic ...


The Limited Liability Company As A Security, Mark I. Steinberg, Karen L. Conway Nov 2012

The Limited Liability Company As A Security, Mark I. Steinberg, Karen L. Conway

Pepperdine Law Review

No abstract provided.


Are Limited Liability Company Interests Securities?, Mark A. Sargent Nov 2012

Are Limited Liability Company Interests Securities?, Mark A. Sargent

Pepperdine Law Review

No abstract provided.


Regulation Fd Will Result In Poorer Disclosure And Increased Market Volatility, Joanna E. Barnes May 2012

Regulation Fd Will Result In Poorer Disclosure And Increased Market Volatility, Joanna E. Barnes

Pepperdine Law Review

No abstract provided.