Providing False or Misleading Information
How is it that a company touted as a stable, secure investment “collapsed in spectacular fashion and was shut down by the Securities and Exchange Commission” (SEC)? Aequitas did so, losing its investors hundreds of millions of dollars. The complaint for this class action alleges that secondary responsibility for the losses belongs to other companies who in various ways aided, promoted, or allowed its misrepresentations.
This class action concerns investment offerings known as United Development Funding (UDF), and specifically UDF III. The complaint alleges that the defendants made false statements about UDF III’s success to induce people to invest or to invest more. It backed up the false statements by distributions—which, according to the complaint, were not in fact earnings from UDF III, but money paid for investments in UDF IV and UDF V. Since the securities were never offered for sale on an exchange, certain federal securities laws do not apply. The complaint claims violations of the Texas Securities Act, among other things.
As the world has become smaller via electronic transactions, fraud and money laundering have become more of a concern for regulators. The complaint for this securities class action claims that MoneyGram International, Inc. provided false or misleading information to shareholders about its fraud- and money laundering-prevention measures.
Simandou is a mountain that is rich in minerals, but it is in the interior of Guinea, a West African country that by some accounts is one of the most corrupt places in the world. The complaint for this class action claims that Rio Tinto PLC became anxious when some of its mining rights were revoked and given to a competitor and that it paid a very large bribe to ensure that it retained its remaining rights. However, the company continued to claim it did not pay bribes and did business ethically, in violation of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
A subsidiary of the New Oriental Education & Technology Group, Inc. helps students in the People’s Republic of China apply to foreign universities. But according to the complaint for this class action, this subsidiary actually writes application materials and handles the whole application process, sometimes fabricating information. This is fraud, the complaint claims, and not disclosing it violates the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and affects the value of the entire company.
Colony NorthStar, Inc. is a real estate and investment management company that operates in five segments. The complaint for this class action alleges that the company did not disclose in a timely way adverse information, about the company’s Healthcare and Investment Managements segments, including some units related to its merger, in violation of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
The complaint for this securities class action alleges that Cancer Genetics, Inc. failed to properly account for doubtful collections in some of its accounts, recording them as bad debts when they should have been reductions in net revenue. The complaint says that the improper recording amounts to a violation of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson did not prepare its financial statements according to International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), claims the complaint for this securities class action. As a result, it says, it overstated service revenues and improperly delayed reporting at least a billion dollars of expenses on long-term service projects, making its public statements false and misleading under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Throughout the class period, as the company reported disappointing results, its stock price fell precipitously.
News of Synacor’s signing of a three-year contract with AT&T, the largest pay TV provider in the US, seemed promising for the company when it was announced in 2016. But the complaint for this class action claims that Synacor did not disclose that the large revenues projected to come from the contract would not show up until 2018, long after the announcement was made. The complaint for this class action alleges that the company misled investors into thinking that they would come much sooner, in violation of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
What should investors think of a company that holds an initial public offering, projects astronomical growth, then admits it lacks even personnel who are skilled in proper reporting? The complaint for this class action alleges that Longfin Corporation stock rose and plunged in a matter of months, based on false impressions of the corporation which were provided or sustained by its management, in violation of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.