The Pennsylvania State Employees' Retirement System, Harrisburg, reached a $93 million settlement in a class-action suit against insurance company CIGNA Corp., confirmed Mary Ann Gatter, attorney at law firm Berger & Montague, which represented the $30 billion retirement system. The retirement system filed claims against CIGNA in 2002 on behalf of investors who purchased CIGNA's stock between Nov. 2, 2001, and Oct. 24, 2002, during which the company's stock "plummeted," according to the compliant. The decline resulted from CIGNA's transition to a new health insurance system, Ms. Gatter said. While CIGNA officials indicated the project was on track, "this representation was false and misleading," according to the complaint. The company's earnings, and ultimately its stock price, were adversely affected, according to the complaint. PennSERS owned "thousands" of shares of CIGNA through one of its investment advisers, according to the complaint; further details could not be learned by press time.
CIGNA officials, in a statement on the company's website, said they agreed to the settlement "in order to avoid the time and expense involved in proceeding to trial." The company did not admit to any wrongdoing as part of the settlement.