On September 13, 2019, Judge Alison J. Nathan appointed Lowey Dannenberg as interim co-lead class counsel in the consolidated class action In re Merrill, BofA, and Morgan Stanley Spoofing Litigation, 19-cv-6002 (S.D.N.Y.). The case alleges that Merrill Lynch, Bank of America, and Morgan Stanley, manipulated the prices of precious metals futures and options traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange (“NYMEX”) and Commodity Exchange, Inc. (“COMEX”) from least as early as January 1, 2008 through at least December 31, 2014.
Defendant Merrill Lynch entered a non-prosecution agreement with the DOJ and a settlement with the CFTC related to this conduct on June 25, 2019, agreeing to pay $25 million in criminal fines, restitution, and forfeiture of trading profits. Defendants John Pacilio and Edward Bases, former Merrill Lynch precious metals traders, were also indicted on commodities fraud, spoofing, and conspiracy charges. Bases and Pacilio allegedly using “spoof” orders to inject materially false and misleading liquidity and price information into the precious metals futures markets while employed by Merrill Lynch.
You can learn more about Lowey’s pioneering commodities practice, including other spoofing cases, here: https://www.lowey.com/commodities/