Section 10(b)

Court Reverses Itself and Dismisses RMBS Fraud Complaint Against Several Banks

On September 30, Judge Sam Lindsay of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas granted a motion to dismiss plaintiff Town North Bank’s amended complaint against UBS, Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch, and J.P. Morgan, among others. Town North Bank asserted claims under Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Texas Securities Act. In March 2013, Judge Lindsay had denied the defendants’ motion to dismiss but reviewed the briefs anew when the defendants filed a motion for interlocutory appeal. Upon that review, Judge Lindsay sua sponte vacated the March 2013 order and granted the motion to dismiss. In particular, Judge Lindsay found claims related to certain of the alleged misstatements time barred under the applicable statute of repose found in 28 U.S.C. § 1658(b). As to the remaining statements, Judge Lindsay found that Town North Bank had not adequately alleged that the Defendants “made” the statements in light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent ruling in Janus Capital Group v. First Derivative Traders. The court also concluded that Town North Bank did not allege scienter with sufficient particularity because the amended complaint lacked factual allegations from which the court could reasonably infer that Defendants were aware of any false statements at the time they were made. Order.

Texas Bank Sues Underwriters and Investment Advisor Over RMBS

On November 11, 2011, Town North Bank NA filed a complaint in the federal district court for the Northern District of Texas against UBS Financial Services Inc., Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, Merrill Lynch & Co., LLC, J. P. Morgan Securities LLC as successor to Bear Stearns & Co., Inc., and Shay Financial Services, Inc. (Town North’s investment advisor). Town North seeks $113 million in damages, alleging that the defendants misrepresented that the mortgage loans underlying RMBS that it purchased complied with underwriting guidelines, overstated the borrowers’ capacity to repay their mortgage loans, and failed to disclose the quality of loans underlying the securities and their risk of loss. Town North asserts causes of action under Section 10(b) of the Securities and Exchange Act, state law fraud, and breach of fiduciary duty (against Shay Financial only). Complaint.