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Full-Text Articles in Law

Securities Law In The Sixties: The Supreme Court, The Second Circuit, And The Triumph Of Purpose Over Text, Adam C. Pritchard, Robert B. Thompson Nov 2018

Securities Law In The Sixties: The Supreme Court, The Second Circuit, And The Triumph Of Purpose Over Text, Adam C. Pritchard, Robert B. Thompson

Articles

This Article analyzes the Supreme Court’s leading securities cases from 1962 to 1972—SEC v. Capital Gains Research Bureau, Inc.; J.I. Case Co. v. Borak; Mills v. Electric Auto-Lite Co.; Superintendent of Insurance v. Bankers Life & Casualty Co.; and Affiliated Ute of Utah v. United States—relying not just on the published opinions, but also the Justices’ internal letters, memos, and conference notes. The Sixties Court did not simply apply the text as enacted by Congress, but instead invoked the securities laws’ purposes as a guide to interpretation. The Court became a partner of Congress in shaping the securities laws ...


Informed Trading And Its Regulation, Merritt B. Fox, Lawrence R. Glosten, Gabriel V. Rauterberg Jun 2018

Informed Trading And Its Regulation, Merritt B. Fox, Lawrence R. Glosten, Gabriel V. Rauterberg

Articles

Informed trading--trading on information not yet reflected in a stock's price-- drives the stock market. Such informational advantages can arise from astute analysis of varied pieces of public news, from just released public information, or from confidential information from inside a firm. We argue that these disparate types of trading are all better regulated as part of the broader phenomenon of informed trading. Informed trading makes share prices more accurate, enhancing the allocation of capital, but also makes markets less liquid, which is costly to the efficiency of trade. Informed trading thus poses a fundamental trade-off in how it ...


Stock Market Manipulation And Its Regulation, Merritt B. Fox, Lawrence R. Glosten, Gabriel Rauterberg Jan 2018

Stock Market Manipulation And Its Regulation, Merritt B. Fox, Lawrence R. Glosten, Gabriel Rauterberg

Articles

More than eighty years after federal law first addressed stock market manipulation, the federal courts remain fractured by disagreement and confusion concerning manipulation law's most foundational issues. There remains, for example, a sharp split among the federal circuits concerning manipulation law's central question: Whether trading activity alone can ever be considered illegal manipulation under federal law? Academics have been similarly confused-economists and legal scholars cannot agree on whether manipulation is even possible in principle, let alone on how to properly address it in practice.


Stock Market Futurism, Merritt Fox, Gabriel Rauterberg Jul 2017

Stock Market Futurism, Merritt Fox, Gabriel Rauterberg

Articles

The U.S. stock market is undergoing extraordinary upheaval. The approval of the application of the Investors Exchange (IEX) to become the nation's newest stock exchange, including its famous "speed bump," was one of the SEC's most controversial decisions in decades. Other exchanges have proposed a raft of new innovations in its wake. This evolving equity market is a critical piece of national infrastructure, but the regulatory scheme for its institutions is increasingly frayed. In particular, current regulation draws sharp distinctions among different kinds of markets for trading stocks, treating stock exchanges as self-regulatory organizations immune from private ...


The Sec's Shift To Administrative Proceedings: An Empirical Assessment, Stephen J. Choi, Adam C. Prichard Jan 2017

The Sec's Shift To Administrative Proceedings: An Empirical Assessment, Stephen J. Choi, Adam C. Prichard

Articles

Congress has repeatedly expanded the authority of the SEC to pursue violations of securities laws in proceedings adjudicated by the SEC's own administrative law judges, most recently through the Dodd-Frank Act. We report the results from an empirical study of SEC enforcement actions against non-financial public companies to assess the impact of the Dodd-Frank Act on the balance between civil court and administrative enforcement actions. We show a general decline in the number of court actions and an increase in the number of administrative proceedings post-Dodd-Frank. At the same time, we show an increase in average civil penalties post-Dodd-Frank ...


Private And Public Ordering In Safe Asset Markets, Anna Gelpern, Erik F. Gerding Jan 2015

Private And Public Ordering In Safe Asset Markets, Anna Gelpern, Erik F. Gerding

Articles

An influential literature in economics explores the phenomenon of “safe assets” – when participants across financial markets act “as if” certain debt is risk free – as well as its role in the global financial crisis and its implications for post-crisis reform.

We highlight the role of private ordering in constructing safe assets. Private ordering, including contractual devices and transaction structures, contributes to the creation of these debt contracts, to their collective treatment in financial markets as low risk investments, and to the making of deep and liquid markets in them. These contracts and transaction structures also provide a template for understanding ...


An Essay For Professor Alan Bromberg: Removing The Taint From Past Illegal Offers And Sales - 40 Years Later, Douglas M. Branson Jan 2015

An Essay For Professor Alan Bromberg: Removing The Taint From Past Illegal Offers And Sales - 40 Years Later, Douglas M. Branson

Articles

In 1975, for its inaugural, the Journal of Corporation Law at the University of Iowa solicited a lead article for issue 1, page 1. The editors solicited that piece from Professor Alan Bromberg, one of the great academics of securities law, then or at any other time. Professor Bromberg, of Southern Methodist University, died last year. This article began as a piece with three goals: (1) pay homage to Professor Bromberg, whom I knew personally, and his achievements; (2) update his 1975 article; and (3) add flesh to the treatment by examining closely practical, modern day situations in which rescission ...


A Return To Old-Time Religion? The Glass-Steagall Act, The Volcker Rule, Limits On Proprietary Trading, And Sustainability, Douglas M. Branson Jan 2014

A Return To Old-Time Religion? The Glass-Steagall Act, The Volcker Rule, Limits On Proprietary Trading, And Sustainability, Douglas M. Branson

Articles

Pursuant to directions contained in the Dodd-Frank Act (2010), five federal agencies collaborated to produce a 983 page rule limiting proprietary trading by financial institutions (the Volcker Rule, which becomes effective in summer, 2015). The Volcker Rule limits proprietary trading to no more than 3 percent of “Tier One” assets. The hoped for effects are that financial institutions will be strictly limited in trading for their own accounts. Some say, propelled by unbridled greed, U.S. financial institutions borrowed excessive amounts of money, inflating leverage ratios as high as 36 or 40 to 1, using the borrowed funds to engage ...


'Quack Corporate Governance' As Traditional Chinese Medicine – The Securities Regulation Cannibalization Of China's Corporate Law And A State Regulator's Battle Against Party State Political Economic Power, Nicholas C. Howson Jan 2014

'Quack Corporate Governance' As Traditional Chinese Medicine – The Securities Regulation Cannibalization Of China's Corporate Law And A State Regulator's Battle Against Party State Political Economic Power, Nicholas C. Howson

Articles

From the start of the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) “corporatization ” project in the late 1980s, a Chinese corporate governance regime subject to increasingly enabling legal norms has been determined by mandatory regulations imposed by the PRC securities regulator, the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC). Indeed, the Chinese corporate law system has been cannibalized by all - encompassing securities regulation directed at corporate governance, at least for companies with listed stock. This Article traces the path of that sustained intervention and makes a case — wholly contrary to the “quack corporate governance” critique much aired in the United States — that ...


A Changing Mosaic In Sec Regulation And Enforcement: Broker-Dealers And Investment Advisers, Douglas M. Branson Jan 2013

A Changing Mosaic In Sec Regulation And Enforcement: Broker-Dealers And Investment Advisers, Douglas M. Branson

Articles

The 2010 Dodd-Frank Act directed the SEC to study the issue of whether the Commission should, by regulation, decree broker-dealers (“registered representatives”) subject to the same fiduciary standards applicable to investment advisers, applicable at least since SEC v. Capital Gains Research Bureau, 385 U.S. 180 (1963). The SEC completed such a study in 2011, predictably recommending that the Commission exercise the authority Dodd-Frank had given it, namely, waving its wand, declaring brokers fiduciaries. Many able academics and regulators have adumbrated the pros and the cons of such a regulatory step. To date, however, the SEC has done nothing, undoubtedly ...


Facebook, The Jobs Act, And Abolishing Ipos, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2012

Facebook, The Jobs Act, And Abolishing Ipos, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

Initial public offerings (IPOs)-the first sale of private firms' stock to the public-are a bellwether of investor sentiment. Investors must be bullish if they are putting their money into untested start-ups. IPOs are frequently cited in the business press as a key barometer of the health of financial markets. Politicians, too, see a steady flow of IPOs as an indicator that capital is fueling the entrepreneurial initiative that sustains the growth of new businesses. Growing businesses create jobs, so Republicans and Democrats can find common ground on the importance of promoting IPOs. That bipartisan consensus was on display this ...


The Price Of Pay To Play In Securities Class Actions, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen J. Choi, Drew T. Johnson-Skinner Jan 2011

The Price Of Pay To Play In Securities Class Actions, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen J. Choi, Drew T. Johnson-Skinner

Articles

We study the effect of campaign contributions to lead plaintiffs—“pay to play”—on the level of attorney fees in securities class actions. We find that state pension funds generally pay lower attorney fees when they serve as lead plaintiffs in securities class actions than do individual investors serving in that capacity, and larger funds negotiate for lower fees. This differential disappears, however, when we control for campaign contributions made to offcials with infuence over state pension funds. This effect is most pronounced when we focus on state pension funds that receive the largest campaign contributions and that associate repeatedly ...


Securities Law In The Roberts Court: Agenda Or Indifference?, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2011

Securities Law In The Roberts Court: Agenda Or Indifference?, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

To outsiders, securities law is not all that interesting. The body of the law consists of an interconnecting web of statutes and regulations that fit together in ways that are decidedly counter-intuitive. Securities law rivals tax law in its reputation for complexity and dreariness. Worse yet, the subject regulated-capital markets-can be mystifying to those uninitiated in modem finance. Moreover, those markets rapidly evolve, continually increasing their complexity. If you do not understand how the financial markets work, it is hard to understand how securities law affects those markets.


Securities Class Actions Move North: A Doctrinal And Empirical Analysis Of Securities Class Actions In Canada, Adam C. Pritchard, Janis P. Sarra Jan 2010

Securities Class Actions Move North: A Doctrinal And Empirical Analysis Of Securities Class Actions In Canada, Adam C. Pritchard, Janis P. Sarra

Articles

The article explores securities class actions involving Canadian issuers since the provinces added secondary market class action provisions to their securities legislation. It examines the development of civil liability provisions, and class proceedings legislation and their effect on one another. Through analyses of the substance and framework of the statutory provisions, the article presents an empirical and comparative examination of cases involving Canadian issuers in both Canada and the United States. In addition, it explores how both the availability and pricing of director and officer insurance have been affected by the potential for secondary market class action liability. The article ...


The Screening Effect Of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen J. Choi, Karen K. Nelson Jan 2009

The Screening Effect Of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen J. Choi, Karen K. Nelson

Articles

Prior research shows that the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act (PSLRA) increased the significance of merit-related factors in determining the incidence and outcomes of securities fraud class actions (Johnson et al. 2007). We examine two possible explanations for this finding: the PSLRA may have reduced the incidence of nonmeritorious litigation, or it may have changed the definition of merit, effectively precluding claims that would have survived and produced a settlement pre-PSLRA. We find no evidence that pre-PSLRA claims that settled for nuisance value would be less likely to be filed under the PSLRA regime. There is evidence, however, that pre-PSLRA ...


A Requiem For The Retail Investor?, Alicia J. Davis Jan 2009

A Requiem For The Retail Investor?, Alicia J. Davis

Articles

The American retail investor is dying. In 1950, retail investors owned over 90% of the stock of U.S. corporations. Today, retail investors own less than 30% and represent a very small percentage of U.S. trading volume. Data on the overall level of retail trading in U.S. equity markets are not available. But recent New York Stock Exchange ("NYSE") data reveal that trades by individual investors represent, on average, less than 2% of NYSE trading volume for NYSE-listed firms. There is no question that U.S. securities markets are now dominated by institutional investors. In his article, "The ...


Stoneridge Investment Partners V. Scientific-Atlanta: The Political Economy Of Securities Class Action Reform, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2008

Stoneridge Investment Partners V. Scientific-Atlanta: The Political Economy Of Securities Class Action Reform, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

I begin in Part II by explaining the wrong turn that the Court took in Basic. The Basic Court misunderstood the function of the reliance element and its relation to the question of damages. As a result, the securities class action regime established in Basic threatens draconian sanctions with limited deterrent benefit. Part III then summarizes the cases leading up to Stoneridge and analyzes the Court's reasoning in that case. In Stoneridge, like the decisions interpreting the reliance requirement of Rule 10b-5 that came before it, the Court emphasized policy implications. Sometimes policy implications are invoked to broaden the ...


How Do Securities Laws Influence Affect, Happiness, & Trust?, Peter H. Huang Jan 2008

How Do Securities Laws Influence Affect, Happiness, & Trust?, Peter H. Huang

Articles

This Article advocates that securities regulators promulgate rules based upon taking into consideration their impacts upon investors' and others' affect, happiness, and trust. Examples of these impacts are consumer optimism, financial stress, anxiety over how thoroughly securities regulators deliberate over proposed rules, investor confidence in securities disclosures, market exuberance, social moods, and subjective well-being. These variables affect and are affected by traditional financial variables, such as consumer debt, expenditures, and wealth; corporate investment; initial public offerings; and securities market demand, liquidity, prices, supply, and volume. This Article proposes that securities regulators can and should evaluate rules based upon measures of ...


The Investor Compensation Fund, Alicia J. Davis Jan 2007

The Investor Compensation Fund, Alicia J. Davis

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The prevailing view among securities regulation scholars is that compensating victims of secondary market securities fraud is inefficient. As the theory goes, diversified investors are as likely to be on the gaining side of a transaction tainted by fraud as the losing side. Therefore, such investors should have no expected net losses from fraud because their expected losses will be matched by expected gains. This Article argues that this view is flawed; even diversified investors can suffer substantial losses from fraud, presenting a compelling case for compensation. The interest in compensation, however, should be advanced by better means than are ...


The Next Epidemic: Bubbles And The Growth And Decay Of Securities Regulation, Erik F. Gerding Jan 2006

The Next Epidemic: Bubbles And The Growth And Decay Of Securities Regulation, Erik F. Gerding

Articles

This article explores how speculative bubbles undermine the effectiveness of securities regulations and spawn epidemics of securities fraud. A brief historical survey demonstrates that stock market bubbles almost invariably coincide with epidemics of securities fraud, and provides a compelling argument that the outbreak of fraud in the Enron era did not stem merely from factors unique to the 1990s, but from the dynamics of an asset price bubble as well.

Drawing on perspectives from securities law practice and economic theory, the article argues that bubbles dilute the deterrent effect of antifraud rules and promote deregulation. Both effects alter the calculus ...


The Irrational Auditor And Irrational Liability, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2006

The Irrational Auditor And Irrational Liability, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

This Article argues that less liability for auditors in certain areas might encourage more accurate and useful financial statements, or at least equally accurate statements at a lower cost. Audit quality is promoted by three incentives: reputation, regulation, and litigation. When we take reputation and regulation into account, exposing auditors to potentially massive liability may undermine the effectiveness of reputation and regulation, thereby diminishing integrity of audited financial statements. The relation of litigation to the other incentives that promote audit quality has become more important in light of the sea change that occurred in the regulation of the auditing profession ...


Moody Investing And The Supreme Court: Rethinking The Materiality Of Information And The Reasonableness Of Investors, Peter H. Huang Jan 2005

Moody Investing And The Supreme Court: Rethinking The Materiality Of Information And The Reasonableness Of Investors, Peter H. Huang

Articles

This Article critically analyzes the judicial decisions and reasoning of the United States Supreme Court and lower courts accepting certain defenses in securities fraud litigation. This Article develops how and why the core notions of materiality of information and the reasonable investor should be revised in light of recent empirical data, experimental evidence, and theoretical models of moody investing. This Article proposes modifying three recent developments in materiality doctrine to take into account moody investing. In particular, this Article argues that current judicial treatment of puffery is flawed because it neglects the power of puffery to alter moods. This Article ...


Do Institutions Matter? The Impact Of The Lead Plaintiff Provision Of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen J. Choi, Jill E. Fisch Jan 2005

Do Institutions Matter? The Impact Of The Lead Plaintiff Provision Of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen J. Choi, Jill E. Fisch

Articles

When Congress enacted the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act in 1995 ("PSLRA"), the Act's "lead plaintiff' provision was the centerpiece of its efforts to increase investor control over securities fraud class actions. The lead plaintiff provision alters the balance of power between investors and class counsel by creating a presumption that the investor with the largest financial stake in the case will serve as lead plaintiff. The lead plaintiff then chooses class counsel and, at least in theory, negotiates the terms of counsel's compensation. Congress's stated purpose in enacting the lead plaintiff provision was to encourage institutional ...


The Sec At 70: Time For Retirement?, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2005

The Sec At 70: Time For Retirement?, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

The Article proceeds as follows. Part I explains the pathologies of the SEC and explores the relation between those pathologies and the SEC's status as an independent agency. Part II then outlines an alternative regulatory structure primarily situated within the executive branch. I also argue that such a relocation of authority would enhance regulatory effectiveness while simultaneously reducing the cost of excessive regulation. The Article concludes with some thoughts about the viability of my proposal.


The Sec At 70: Time For Retirement?, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2005

The Sec At 70: Time For Retirement?, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

As one grows older, birthdays gradually shift from being celebratory events to more reflective occasions. One's 40th birthday is commemorated rather differently from one's 2lst, which is, in turn, celebrated quite differently from one's first. After a certain point, the individual birthdays become less important and it is the milestone years to whch we pay particular attention. Sadly for entities like the Securities and Exchange Commission, it is only the milestone years (the ones ending in five or zero, for some reason), that draw any attention at all. No one held a conference to celebrate the SEC ...


Should Issuers Be On The Hook For Laddering? An Empirical Analysis Of The Ipo Market Manipulation Litigation, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen J. Choi Jan 2004

Should Issuers Be On The Hook For Laddering? An Empirical Analysis Of The Ipo Market Manipulation Litigation, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen J. Choi

Articles

On December 6, 2000, the Wall Street Journal ran a front-page story exposing abuses in the market for initial public offerings (IPOs). The story revealed "tie-in" agreements between investment banks and initial investors seeking to participate in "hot" offerings. Under those agreements, initial investors would commit to buy additional shares of the offering company's stock in secondary market trading in return for allocations of shares in the IPO. As the Wall Street Journal related, those "[c]ommitments to buy in the after-market lock in demand for additional stock at levels above the IPO price. As such, they provide the ...


Trust, Guilt, And Securities Regulation, Peter H. Huang Jan 2003

Trust, Guilt, And Securities Regulation, Peter H. Huang

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This Article analyzes the importance of trust in securities investing and how guilt about breaching such trust has implications for securities regulation. Both U.S. federal securities laws and the regulations of the National Association of Securities Dealers impose high standards of professional conduct upon securities professionals. But exactly what are and should be the legal responsibilities of securities professionals remain the subject of much debate. In particular, courts disagree over when broker-dealers are fiduciaries of their clients. A legal consequence of a fiduciary relationship is a duty of fair dealing. This Article is the first to analyze the emotional ...


Behavioral Economics And The Sec, Stephen J. Choi, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2003

Behavioral Economics And The Sec, Stephen J. Choi, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

Not all investors are rational. Quite apart from the obvious examples of credulity in the face of the latest Ponzi scheme, there is no shortage of evidence that many investors' decisions are influenced by systematic biases that impair their abilities to maximize their investment returns. For example, investors will often hold onto poorly performing stocks longer than warranted, hoping to recoup their losses. Other investors will engage in speculative trading, dissipating their returns by paying larger commissions than more passive investors. And we are not just talking about widows and orphans here. There is evidence that supposedly sophisticated institutional investors-mutual ...


Securities Price Risks And Financial Derivative Markets, Peter H. Huang Jan 2001

Securities Price Risks And Financial Derivative Markets, Peter H. Huang

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The financial and popular media report almost daily on the volatility of securities market prices. Yet, many people continue to buy securities to hedge against or speculate on certain risks. People can also buy or sell derivatives to hedge against or speculate on fluctuations in securities prices. This Article discusses three regulatory policy implications of utilizing derivatives markets to reallocate the bearing of securities price risks. First, if there are too few non-redundant derivative markets, a competitive market equilibrium allocation of securities price risks is typically constrained Pareto inefficient. This financial economic result means that for typical economies, a regulator ...


The Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act Of 1998: The Sun Sets On California's Blue Sky Laws, David M. Lavine, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 1998

The Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act Of 1998: The Sun Sets On California's Blue Sky Laws, David M. Lavine, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

It is often said that California sets the pace for changes in America's tastes. Trends established in California often find their way into the heartland, having a profound effect on our nation's cultural scene. Nouvelle cuisine, the dialect of the Valley Girl and rollerblading all have their genesis on the West Coast. The most recent trend to emerge from California, instead of catching on in the rest of the country, has been stopped dead in its tracks by a legislative rebuke from Washington, D.C. California's latest, albeit short-lived, contribution to the nation was a migration of ...