Lawsuits

Lawyers for Mr. Corzine filed a motion late Tuesday to dismiss a civil case against him brought by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the federal agency that regulated MF Global until its demise in 2011. The 30-page motion, filed in Federal District Court in Manhattan, outlined Mr. Corzine’s defense and leveled a sharp critique of the commission, depicting the agency’s lawsuit as poorly drafted and error prone. “There is no evidence demonstrating that Mr. Corzine knowingly directed unlawful conduct or acted without good faith,” wrote the lawyers from Dechert, Andrew J. Levander and Benjamin E. Rosenberg. “Rather than acknowledge that reality and move on, the C.F.T.C. has clung to its baseless presumptions and manufactured charges of wrongdoing that are supposedly connected to Mr. Corzine.” [Dealbook]

Were they baited with promises of meeting the Donald in the flesh, only to be offered an opportunity to stand in line for a photo-op with a poster bearing his face? Maybe. Did thousands of Trump College alums nevertheless give the school an A+, tuition well spent? Supposedly, yes. Read more »

  • 09 Aug 2013 at 3:51 PM

Phil Falcone Is Just Going To Start Suing Everyone

Once the Harbinger founder got a taste of how good it felt to serve someone papers, he just couldn’t stop. This morning it was the entire GPS industry; tomorrow, anyone who sold their LightSquared debt to Charlie Ergen, these guys, for not winning the Stanley Cup, and maybe the SEC, in some sort of countersuit. Which, if you were looking into the not too distant future, might go down something like this:

[Somewhere in midtown.]

Phil Falcone, to someone on the other line. It’s not clear who it is, but we get the impression she has hooves: Have you seen this American Express bill?! I told you we need to be cutting BACK, not spending MORE right now. [pauses to listen to Unknown Caller's response.] Well maybe I don’t care if Barney’s had a mumu that was speaking to you. [pauses to listen to Unknown Caller's response, with increasing impatience.] Well maybe I don’t care if you needed a pick-me-up, I told you we can’t be borrowing from the fund anymore. [deafening shrieking on the other end of the phone.] I’m sorry, I didn’t mean that. I’m just really stressed these days…

[A knock at the door.] Read more »

Sayeth the SEC: Read more »

The judge hearing the Justice Department’s CDO-rating lawsuit against S&P refused to dismiss it yesterday, rejecting S&P’s much-mocked theory that its pre-crisis claims of independence and objectivity and, like, plausible ratings were just “puffery” that no one should have taken seriously. Here is the story, and here is his opinion, and here is a rhetorical question:1

At the hearing on this matter, Defendants repeatedly asserted that no reasonable investor would have relied on S&P’s claims of independence and objectivity. Regarding the question of materiality, S&P argued that, since the issuer banks had access to the same information and models that S&P analysts did, they could not have been fooled by faulty credit ratings. This begs the question: if no investor believed in S&P’s objectivity, and every bank had access to the same information and models as S&P, is S&P asserting that, as a matter of law, the company’s credit ratings service added absolutely zero material value as a predictor of creditworthiness?

Well so I mean do you want an answer? How much value do you think they added?

The S&P case is a pretty weird beast because it’s brought under the FIRREA, a law designed to protect federally insured banks, and so the government has to assert that: Read more »

This lawsuit is mostly about the (alleged!) unapologetic Antisemitism of Knight Capital managing director Brendan Joseph McCarthy, which former employee and plaintiff Robert Morris Milloul claims caused him and others to lose their jobs in the algorithmic trading unit of the firm; we don’t need to summarize the allegations but we did think it was important to highlight the motivational technique he was said to use around the office. Read more »

If you had to pick a current or former Wall Street CEO to be your father-in-law, it stands to reason that Dick Fuld would have to be close to the bottom of your list, yes? Lloyd, obviously, would be a delight. Vikram would probably be fun, too. Something about Jamie just seems very pal-y, father-in-law-ish, once you get past him letting you know he’ll take you out in the middle of the night, no questions asked, no finger prints left behind if you ever do anything to hurt his child. Brian Moynihan would finally loosen up and stop being awkward around you circa your 20th anniversary. Hank would probably be slightly scary but in a good way. Someone who gets into “physical altercation[s]” with fans of the opposing team at a children’s hockey game is probably not a guy you want to sit across from at Thanksgiving or play squash with after he’s figured out you can “earn points by hitting your opponent with the ball when he/she is between you and the front wall.” And looking down the line, it stands to reason that Dick Fuld would definitely be close to the bottom of your list of candidates for ex-father-in-law, yes? Aaron Packles knows what we’re talking about. Read more »