A group of pension funds has settled a 2012 securities class-action lawsuit with J.P. Morgan Chase for $150 million, relating to the “London Whale” trades.
Lead plaintiffs on the case were the $90 billion Ohio Public Employees Retirement System, Columbus; $32 billion AP7, Stockholm; $14.3 billion Arkansas Teacher Retirement System, Little Rock; and the state of Oregon, said a news release from Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine on Monday.
The settlement includes all those who purchased J.P. Morgan common stock between April 13, 2012, and May 21, 2012, the news release said.
“Misleading investors with wrong or incomplete information is unacceptable and causes real damage,” Mr. DeWine said. “Ohio's pension funds, like all investors, expect companies to provide accurate information so they can appropriately judge the risk of an investment. I am pleased that Ohio has reached this settlement to help recover investment losses for our OPERS pension system members and also discourage future fraud.”
AP7 CEO Richard Grottheim said in a separate news release: “We believe that the settlement represents an excellent recovery for the class after more than three years of litigation. AP7's involvement in this matter illustrates its continued commitment to represent the interests of investors.”
The suit was filed in July 2012, and “alleged that J.P. Morgan Chase issued false and misleading statements regarding trading activity, describing risky and speculative trading strategies merely as 'hedges' and 'risk management' devices,” the Ohio news release said. Trading losses caused the bank's stock value to plummet, which resulted in billions of dollars of investor losses. OPERS lost about $2.5 million as a result of the alleged fraud, the release said.
“We appreciate the work that the Ohio attorney general has done to recover this money for our members,” said Karen Carraher, OPERS executive director, in the release.
The release added that in the next few weeks all class members will be notified of their status in the class by a claims administrator appointed by the court and receive additional information about filing a claim.
A spokesman for J.P. Morgan declined to comment.