The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2010 decision in Morrison v. National Australia Bank Ltd., 130 S. Ct. 2869 (2010), dealt a landmark blow to investors who purchase securities on non-U.S. exchanges, holding that the antifraud provisions of the federal securities laws do not apply to losses suffered in overseas transactions. As a result, the U.S. courts have effectively been closed to these investors. Recently, however, one district court refused to cede its jurisdiction in a case involving foreign-listed securities given the case’s other connections to the United States. District Court Judge Keith Ellison of the Southern District of Texas issued a milepost decision in the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill litigation in which the court sustained common-law fraud claims premised on shareholder losses on the London Stock Exchange. In re BP p.l.c. Secs. Litig., MDL No. 10-md-2185, Civ. Act. No. 4:12-cv-1837 (S.D. Tex. Sept. 30, 2013). The decision illustrates that there is still a role for the common law in the vindication of investor rights after Morrison.
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