Monthly Archives: January 2012

Investment Advisers: 3 Takeaways from SEC Risk Alert on Social Media Use

On January 4, 2012, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations issued a National Examination Risk Alert on the use of social media by registered investment advisers. Issued the very same day that the SEC charged an investment adviser with offering to sell more than $500 billion of fictitious securities via… Read more »

Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Thresholds Revised for 2012

On January 24, 2012, the Federal Trade Commission announced its annual revisions to the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act merger notification thresholds. From antitrust lawyers on JD Supra, here’s a look at the new limits: FTC Announces Increased Hart-Scott-Rodino Thresholds (King & Spalding) “As a result of the indexing: The $66 million minimum transaction value filing threshold has increased… Read more »

Corruption in China: Words of Caution for U.S. Companies

“If your company operates in China, I have one piece of ‘free’ advice,” writes white-collar crime and compliance lawyer Mike Volkov, “conduct an anti-corruption audit and do it now.”  “Almost one-third of the FCPA criminal cases involve bribery in China… Bribery is built into the Chinese economy. It is a remnant of the communist system… Read more »

Human Rights in Business: More Than Just a Policy

On corporate social responsibility, from law firm Littler: “…increasingly companies are accused of violating human rights even in situations where their activities are in compliance with applicable law or were consistent with the manner in which they have historically conducted business. Human rights as they relate to business are here to stay, and every multinational… Read more »

California Supreme Court Rules Against Expansion of Asbestos Liability in O’Neil v. Crane

On January 12, 2012, the California Supreme Court ruled in O’Neil v. Crane that a manufacturer may not be held liable for harm caused by another manufacturer’s product: “Recognizing plaintiffs’ claims would represent an unprecedented expansion of strict products liability. We decline to do so… The broad rule plaintiffs urge would not further the purposes of… Read more »

Ecuador Notches Two Victories Against Chevron

From Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP, analysis of two recent judicial decisions in the long-standing Lago Agrio dispute between Chevron and plaintiffs in Ecuador suing the global energy company for environmental contamination.  The first looks at an appellate decision in Ecuador that affirmed an $18 billion judgment against Chevron: “… we are not certain how… Read more »

China Law Roundup: Foreign Investment, U.S. Listings, MOFCOM, IP, and more

“Some companies believe that by being listed abroad, they do not benefit from brand awareness, and thus their shares suffer from low trading volume and low p/e multiples. Evidence suggests that these companies’ shares typically trade at a significant discount compared to their peer companies listed on the Chinese and Hong Kong stock exchanges. In… Read more »

Redevelopment Agencies Eliminated: What’s Next for California?

We recently reported on the California Supreme Court decision in California Redevelopment Association v. Matosantos, which upheld a state law that will dissolve the nearly 400 redevelopment agencies across the state. But that isn’t likely to be the final word on the subject, as recent commentary and analysis on the ruling would seem to indicate:… Read more »

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act/Anti-corruption: What to Expect in 2012

From global law firm K&L Gates, a look ahead at FCPA and anti-corruption activities in 2012: “…law enforcement actions against international corruption have become commonplace. What is noteworthy as we enter 2012 is precisely how routine the activity in this area has become. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) suffered a couple of embarrassing setbacks… Read more »

CFPB Launches Nonbank Supervisory Program

On January 5, 2012, just one day after President Obama appointed former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray to be its first Director, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced that it was launching its Nonbank Supervisory Program. Mandated by provisions in the Dodd-Frank Act, the program is designed, according to the agency, to “help level the… Read more »

Conflict Minerals: Implications of Delayed SEC Final Rules

For your interest, an update from law firm Foley Hoag’s Corporate Social Responsibility practice group: “Looking ahead, and based on previous experience, it is most likely that the SEC will introduce a phased approach for disclosures, whereby certain initial disclosures will be required in the first reporting year that will need to be augmented in… Read more »

SEC Guidance on Disclosing Cybersecurity Risks

“In the past year, there were reports of cyber thieves hacking corporate networks to steal customer data from financial services firms and retailers, intellectual property from life sciences, technology and industrial companies and information regarding the location of major oil reserve from multinational oil companies. This proliferation of cyber attacks led to … interpretive guidance… Read more »

Updated: Mabey & Johnson, the SFO, and Confiscated Dividends…

For your interest, recent legal updates on the Mabey & Johnson corruption case unfolding in UK courts, with a specific focus on the recovery and confiscation of dividends and what this might mean re: corruption oversight for investors in public companies: – Confiscation of Dividends by the SFO: Implications for Investors (White & Case) “The… Read more »

Doc of the Day: Year-End Developments and Compliance Checklist

From Lowenstein Sandler’s Investment Management Group, a comprehensive (and practical) “summary of recent legislative and regulatory developments that impact the investment management community.” The advisory includes “checklists of year-end considerations for private investment funds, investment advisers, commodity trading advisors and commodity pool operators” covering a broad range of issues: Form PF and related rulesAmended SEC… Read more »