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On April 17, 2017, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in California Public Employees’ Retirement System v. ANZ Securities. Between July 2007 and January 2008, Lehman Brothers raised over $31 billion through debt offerings. California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), the largest pension fund in the country, purchased millions of dollars of these securities. CalPERS sued Lehman Brothers in 2011, and their case was merged with another retirement fund’s putative class action suit against Lehman Brothers and transferred to a New York district court. Later that year, the other parties settled, but CalPERS decided to pursue its claims individually. The district court dismissed for untimely filing, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed.
The question before the Supreme Court was whether the filing of a putative class action serves, under the American Pipe & Construction Co. v. Utah rule, to satisfy the three-year time limitation in Section 13 of the Securities Act with respect to the claims of putative class members. On Monday, the Supreme Court upheld the Court of Appeals dismissal of the lawsuit. Mark Chenoweth of the Washington Legal Foundation joined us to discuss the decision and its significance.
- Mark Chenoweth, General Counsel, Washington Legal Foundation