Lex Machina is proud to release its 2022 Securities Litigation Report, which examines securities litigation trends in federal district court. This report focuses on the three-year period from 2019 to 2021 and includes analysis of emerging trends, including cryptocurrency cases and the impact of COVID-19. The final section of the report takes a look at the analytics for two recent securities MDL master cases.

Key Trends and Highlights:

  • Securities case filings have increased steadily each year since 2016, with 2,670 securities cases filed in 2021 (an increase of 150% since 2016).
  • The Delaware Court of Chancery’s decision in In re Trulia Inc. Stockholder Litigation, 129 A.3d 884 (Del. Ch. 2016) likely initiated an ongoing migration of cases from state to federal court. This was likely one of the drivers behind the increases in general securities case filings and shareholder derivative case filings, as well as behind the decline in class action securities case filings.
  • The number of securities cases caused by COVID-19 that were filed each quarter dropped to 28 in Q4 of 2021, the lowest number of these cases filed in any quarter since the pandemic began in the second quarter of 2020.
  • Cryptocurrency case filings trended upward by increasing to 136 cases filed in 2021, the highest number recorded to date.
  • Over the three-year period from 2019 to 2021, the Southern District of New York heard the highest number of securities cases (1,979 cases), while Judge Stark from the District of Delaware heard the highest number of securities cases (248 cases). The top four most active judges were in the District of Delaware.
  • The Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) was the most active plaintiff and plaintiffs’ counsel over the past three years.
  • The most active defendants in securities cases over the last three years were financial institutions and banks, with J.P. Morgan Securities LLC appearing as the defendant in the highest number of cases (64 cases).
  • Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom represented defendants in the highest number of securities cases filed over the last three years, with 177 cases.
  • Securities MDL case filings have generally trended downward since 2009, with 305 filed in 2009 and 45 filed in 2021.

View our infographic.

Legal Analytics is used for planning, budgeting, and litigation strategy. The Law Firms Activity Report may be used for strategic planning, marketing, counsel evaluation, or competitive analysis in order to gauge market leaders and competitors against a dynamic, challenging legal landscape. 

Lex Machina hosted a webcast to discuss the report on March 31, 2022 with Rachel Fritzler (Partner in litigation at Kirkland & Ellis) and Laura Hopkins (Legal Data Expert at Lex Machina and report author), hosted by Joshua Harvey (Manager of the Customer Success Team). View a recording of the webcast.

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