The Big Breakup In Action

The future is now for Milberg Weiss, which has been in the process of splitting into two separate firms for the past six months. (For the latest on the split, see this recent post.) Milberg’s New York and San Diego offices are about to face off over lead plaintiff/lead counsel status in the securities class actions filed against the NYSE specialist trading firms.

As reported in The Recorder (via – free regist. req’d), in October Milberg’s New York office filed suit on behalf of Generic Trading of Philadelphia against the specialist trading firms, while last Tuesday Milberg’s San Diego office filed suit on behalf of CalPERS against the same firms and added the NYSE as a defendant. (The 10b-5 Daily has posted about the CalPERS suit.) A spokesman for CalPERS stated that the timing of the state’s suit was intended to meet the 60-day deadline for moving for lead plaintiff status triggered by the original suit. Both Generic Trading and CalPERS have filed motions to be appointed lead plaintiff — putting the two Milberg offices into an adversarial position even before the split is official.

Quote of note: “There are signs that the divorce has been completed in spirit, if not on paper. East Coast and West Coast partners are already competing for clients, said a lawyer who did not wish to be named. Also, the New York office recently filed a securities fraud class action in San Francisco, leaving any mention of the firm’s San Francisco office off their filings.”

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