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This Q3 2019 update extends analyses contained in the 29 January 2019 report “Recent Trends in Securities Class Action Litigation: 2018 Full-Year Review,” coauthored by NERA Senior Consultant Svetlana Starykh and Consultant Janeen McIntosh.

  • Filings through Q3 2019 suggest that new securities class actions will peak at over 450 in 2019, making this year the highest level of filings since 2001. Through September, filings have continued to show a shift in the types of cases filed. Specifically, for 2019 Rule 10b-5, Section 11, and Section 12 cases represent a larger proportion of all filings than in prior years. On the other hand, the proportion of cases involving a merger objection has declined, a possible indication that these cases are returning to the pre-2017 levels.
  • In 2019, the pace of resolutions has slowed for both dismissed and settled cases from 2018 levels. Despite the lower resolution level, the mix of resolutions is more in line with the mix for 2018 than prior years.
  • Settlements for Q3, excluding merger objection cases, were lower on average than the settlements in the first half of 2019. The average and median settlement values for 2019 (excluding both merger objections and settlements over $1B) have been lower than the values for 2018 but higher than 2017 levels.