From choosing and editing their photos to providing individual advice to completely writing (or rewriting) personalized summaries, through From the start of the New Year through March are some of my busiest months, with new clients galore right around the big V-Day.has posted on its website a hotlinked list of companies (here) that have been contacted by the SEC, revealed a probe by the SEC, or have been subpoenaed by a U. attorney, in connection with the options timing investigations.Options Scorecard list of companies involved in the options backdating investigation (here) is more complete, in that the Journal’s list also includes companies that have announced their own internal investigations.But the list was most recently updated on August 31, 2006, to include the new shareholders’ derivative lawsuit that has been filed against Family Dollar(here).
The number of companies sued in securities class action lawsuits currently stands at 15. has previously speculated (here) that the reason so few of the companies involved with the options backdating investigation have been sued in securities fraud class action is that for many of the companies, their announcement of options timing issues was not accompanied by the kind of stock price drop that would support a securities fraud lawsuit.
The article quotes Columbia University Professor John Coffee that “You can often bribe the plaintiffs attorney with a non-pecuniary settlement coupled with high attorney fees.” The article also reports that the amount of derivative settlements has increased in recent months.
Full disclosure: I was interviewed in connection with the article.
By my count, more than 40 executives have lost their jobs so far. These circumstances have to be uncomfortable for executives at companies undergoing options timing investigations.
Both investors and the individuals themselves have to be wondering about the executives’ continued tenure.