The New York Times reported yesterday that class action lawsuits are on the rise because “[l]itigation stemming from the housing crisis is driving an increase in class-action filings.” The article, by Karen Donovan, states that class action filings in 2007 are up 58% from class action cases in 2006; while not explicitly stated in the article, it is clear that Ms. Donovan is referring to securities class actions only. The Wall Street Journal reports slightly different figures today, with an article by Nathan Koppel putting the increase in securities class action lawsuits at 43%. Whether one uses Ms. Donovan’s figure of 38 subprime-based securities class action filings in 2007 or Mr. Koppel’s figure of 32 subprime-based securities class action cases in 2007, the number is substantial in light of the fact that less than 200 total securities class action cases were filed last year and that no subprime-based securities class actions were filed in 2006.
Ms. Donovan’s article, entitled “Class-Action Cases Rise, Fueled by Subprime Troubles,” may be found online at nytimes.com and was posted on December 21, 2007. Mr. Koppel’s article, entitled “Securities Class-Action Lawsuits Climb by 43%,” may be found online at The Wall Street Journal Online and was posted on December 22, 2007.