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In mid-2007 VCG—a hedge fund then known as CDO Plus Master Fund focusing on fixed income products and derivatives—engaged in a credit default swap (CDS) referencing a collateralized debt obligation (CDO) with counterparty Citibank for a notional of $10 million. Shortly after the contract was put into effect, as the global credit crisis deepened, VCG was required to make margin payments. Within months, the reference obligation had defaulted and VCG owed Citibank $10 million. The dispute ultimately went before a FINRA arbitration panel, where VCG claimed, among other things, that Citigroup Global Markets Inc. (CGMI)—an affiliate of Citibank—had incited several causes of action including suitability, breach of fiduciary duty, negligence, negligent supervision, violations of customer agreements, violations of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, fraud, and constructive fraud.

NERA was retained on behalf of CGMI. The NERA team, led by Chairman Dr. Andrew Carron, demonstrated in testimony before the FINRA panel that VCG was, in fact, a sophisticated investor familiar with complicated financial instruments, such as the ones under consideration. Dr. Carron also testified, based on his prior experience in the securities industry, on custom and practice in the presentation of investment opportunities to customers. CGMI argued that VCG’s claims were without merit and that any requested relief should be denied.

In January 2013, after considering the pleadings, the testimony, and evidence presented at the hearing, FINRA denied VCG's claims in their entirety and specified that all damages were denied as well.