Double Down

When it comes to securities litigation, all of today’s action was in the U.S. Supreme Court.

First, the Court granted cert in the National Australia Bank case (over the objections of the DOJ and SEC) and will review the extraterritorial application of the U.S. securities laws. Bloomberg and Securities Docket have coverage of the decision. Interestingly, Justice Sotomayor recused herself from considering the cert petition.

Second, the Court heard arguments in the Merck case on when the running of the statute of limitations is triggered in securities fraud cases. According to press reports (which the oral argument transcript would appear to confirm), the justices seemed disinclined to overturn the Third Circuit’s ruling and find that the plaintiffs’ claims are barred by the statute of limitations. Exactly what the Court will hold is sufficient to begin the two-year “discovery” period, however, remains to be seen. The briefs filed in the case can be found here.

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