Archive for December, 2012

December 1, 2012

Recent and Upcoming Faculty Speaking Engagements

Janai Nelson was a panelist yesterday at the African Studies Association’s Annual Meeting in Philadelphia.  Her presentation was entitled Ghana’s Expanding Conceptions of Citizenship in Elections: The Enforcement of Voting Rights for Ghana’s Incarcerated Citizens.  You can find the program for the meeting here.

On Tuesday, December 4, 2012, John Q. Barrett will be speaking at the New York City Bar Association. The title of the talk is the New Presidential Term…New U.S. Supreme Court Justices?  You can find details on the event here.

On Thursday, December 13, 2012, Marc DeGirolami will participate in Fordham Law School’s NYC-Area Junior Faculty Colloquium. Marc will be presenting a work-in-progress that he is co-authoring with Kevin C. Walsh entitled Judging Theory.

December 1, 2012

New on SSRN: Nelson and Perino

Two members of the faculty have posted new pieces on SSRN.

As I noted recently, Janai Nelson’s most recent article,  The Causal Context of Disparate Vote Denial, is forthcoming in the Boston College of Law Review. You can now find a draft of the paper here.

I have just posted a piece called Have Institutional Fiduciaries Improved Securities Class Actions? A Review of the Empirical Literature on the PSLRA’s Lead Plaintiff Provision. It will be a chapter in the forthcoming Handbook of Institutional Investment and Fiduciary Duty (Cambridge University Press). Here is the abstract:

In 1995, Congress substantially revamped the governance of securities class actions when it created the lead plaintiff provision as part of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act. This paper reviews the empirical literature evaluating that provision. The story that emerges from these studies is of a largely successful statutory innovation that has markedly improved the conduct of these cases. There is little doubt that passage of the PSLRA spurred institutions to become more active in securities class actions. Overall, the results of that participation are positive. Existing studies demonstrate that cases with institutional lead plaintiffs settle for more and are subject to a lower rate of dismissal than cases with other kinds of lead plaintiffs, although some questions remain regarding whether these results are driven by institutional self-selection of higher quality cases. One study has shown that institutional participation is correlated with at least some improvements in corporate governance. Institutional lead plaintiffs have had their largest impact on attorneys’ fees. Not only is institutional participation correlated with lower fees and greater attorney effort, but there is evidence to suggest that institutions have created an economically significant positive externality – a reduction in fee awards even in cases without institutional plaintiffs. Institutional participation, however, has not been an unalloyed good. Other studies suggest that institutional investors are subject to their own agency costs, particularly in the form of pay-to-play arrangements with plaintiffs’ law firms. Those arrangements appear to eliminate some of the beneficial effects associated with institutional service as lead plaintiffs.

December 1, 2012

Todres on the Federal Budget Deficit

Professor Jacob Todres recently published an article entitled Fixing the Federal Budget Deficit: A Low-Tech Commonsense Approach in the Bloomberg/BNA Daily Tax Report. Here’s Jerry’s description of the proposal:

The article suggests an approach to prevent any further permanent increases to the federal budget deficit. Initially, Congress would be expected to enact annual budgets that are balanced. If Congress spends more in any year than it raises in revenues, it must pay back the excess during the next four years. If it fails to do so, then a fail-safe mechanism would be put in place that would automatically increase revenues in the fifth year by the amount of the excess spending.

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