U.S. Chamber of Commerce Statement on Supreme Court Decision Scaling Back Securities Class Actions

Monday, June 23, 2014 - 12:00pm

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The U.S. Chamber of Commerce today reacted to a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in Halliburton Co. v. Erica P. John Fund, Inc. that takes a step toward scaling back meritless securities class actions.  The Chamber also urged Congress to do more to protect shareholders in these abusive cases.

“The Court today took a small first step in a long journey toward reducing the costs of securities class actions for investors.  We are disappointed, however, that the Court missed an important opportunity to correct the mistake that Basic has turned out to be for investors.  Meritless securities class actions benefit only a few plaintiffs’ lawyers and ultimately cost investors billions,” said Lisa A. Rickard, president of the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform. “Congress must now finish this important journey toward shareholder justice by acting to cut back on litigation driven solely by a few plaintiffs’ lawyers.”

“While today’s decision inches toward bringing securities law back in line with the ordinary rules for proving fraud cases, much more can and should be done,” said Lily Claffee, general counsel of the U.S. Chamber and executive vice president of the National Chamber Litigation Center.

ILR seeks to promote civil justice reform through legislative, political, judicial, and educational activities at the national, state, and local levels.

NCLC is the litigation arm of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce that advocates fair treatment of business in the courts and before regulatory agencies.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.