Articles Tagged with Credit Suisse

The City of Birmingham Retirement and Relief System and the Electrical Workers Pension System Local 103 have filed a proposed class action securities fraud lawsuit accusing a number of big banks of colluding with one another to rig the prices of Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. (Freddie Mac) and Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) unsecured bonds. The defendants in the case include JP Morgan (JPM), Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (C), Barclays Bank (BARC), Deutsche Bank (DB), Credit Suisse (CS), UBS (UBS), Merrill Lynch, BNP Paribas Securities Corp., FTN Financial Securities, Goldman Sachs (GS), and First Tennessee Bank.

According to Law360, the plaintiffs contend that the bank took advantage of the dark market nature of the “private, ‘over the counter’ (OTC) market” where these bonds are bought and sold to get investors to buy the Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae bonds at prices that were “artificially high.”

Fannie and Freddie are both government-backed mortgage-finance companies. They are typically known for converting mortgages into mortgage-backed securities. This investor fraud lawsuit, however, is focused on their unsecured bonds. The proposed class contends that investors purchased the bonds because they thought they were safe, liquid, low risk, and likely to make returns. Their complaint states that the plaintiffs and other investors had not expected the “overcharges and underpayments” that resulted because of the banks’ alleged collusion.

A New York State Supreme Court justice says that Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN) must face a $10 billion securities lawsuit accusing the bank of mortgage-backed securities fraud. Justice Marcy Friedman refused to dismiss the case, saying that a trial will take place. She said that the state has shown that the Swiss financial institution may have engaged in misconduct.

New York sued Credit Suisse in 2012, accusing it of misrepresenting the risks involved in investing in mortgage-backed securities. The bank tried to claim that the state missed the three-year deadline it had for filing such a claim. NY, however, countered that it had six years to pursue its claim.

The state’s Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman, has been going after banks while helping beleaguered homeowners and trying to keep the number of foreclosures from going up. His office has used the Martin Act, which is the NY’s anti-fraud statute to make its cases. Under that law, it is illegal for sellers to make false promises about the securities they are selling. Schneiderman contends that Credit Suisse told investors that the mortgage securities were safe even though the bank knew that the residential loans backing them had “pervasive flaws.”

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