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Judge Approves BofA Settlement, But Will Have You Know He's Not Happy About It

After months of back and forth, Judge Jed Rakoff finally half-assedly approved the $150 million BofA settlement today. But Jed, who seems to be having a hard time letting go of his newfangled celebrity, didn't want to go down without panache and poetic prose.

"Given the somewhat tortured background of these cases and the difficulties the motion presents, the Court is tempted to quote the great American philosopher Yogi Berra: "I wish I had an answer to that because I'm getting tired of answering that question."'

Jed, who says that the Court "begins where any court should: with the facts," reminds us that not only had "Bank of America's management misled its shareholders, but in so doing they were "motivated by self- interest, greed, hubris, and a palpable sense that the normal rules of fair play did not apply to them." Indeed, 'Bank of America's management thought of itself as too big to play by the rules and, just as disturbingly, too big to tell the truth."
And this he says, is just wrong, because although we're "in an era of purple prose, such language may seem deepest violet."


Judge Jed Up SEC's Ass Again

These days, Judge Jed Rakoff’s name creates about as much agita inside the SEC as as Bernie Madoff. If Wall Street’s cops on the beat didn’t have enough to deal with already, now Judge Jed is up their ass about a seemingly meaningless legal settlement in the Galleon insider trading case.

Appellate Court Willing to Entertain the Possibility that Citi Was Not Committing Fraud

I've had some fun these last few days proposing counterintuitive theories for why Citi might not suck as much as you probably think it does and it's nice to see others joining in the pastime, even if this sounds a little far-fetched: The district court’s logic appears to overlook the possibilities (i) that Citigroup might well not consent to settle on a basis that requires it to admit liability, (ii) that the S.E.C. might fail to win a judgment at trial, and (iii) that Citigroup perhaps did not mislead investors. That piece of rank conjecture is from the Second Circuit's opinion on an appeal* of Judge Rakoff's rejection of the settlement between the SEC and Citi over some mortgage-backed securities. Here's DealBook: