Reynolds's Feed
Aug 13, 2012
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China mistakes foreign law firms for Party poopers

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By Reynolds Holding
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

China seems to be mistaking foreign lawyers for Party poopers. They’re dealmakers, not threats to communist rule. Yet wary leaders refuse to license non-Chinese law firms. That’s no way to lure overseas investment. Any policy change must wait until a tense murder case and political transition are over. But economic preeminence won’t come without the help of global lawyers.

Aug 7, 2012
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StanChart can’t avoid the long arm of the Lawsky

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By Reynolds Holding
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.


Standard Chartered can’t avoid the long arm of the Lawsky – Benjamin Lawsky, that is. The brash New York state financial services regulator is threatening to yank the British bank’s license over claims it hid some $250 billion in transactions for Iranian clients. It’s an aggressive move that grabs the spotlight from federal enforcers like the Department of Justice. But if StanChart wants to do business on Wall Street, it has to play by local rules.
 
The U.S. government has, of course, dinged plenty of foreign banks before. The Federal Reserve effectively booted Japan’s Daiwa from the country, the Senate slammed HSBC over money laundering and the DoJ and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission extracted hefty fines from Barclays for manipulating Libor.

Aug 1, 2012
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Loser Citi lawsuit sends SEC back to drawing board

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By Reynolds Holding
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.


A loser lawsuit against a Citigroup banker should send the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission back to the drawing board. A federal jury cleared Brian Stoker of misleading CDO investors, while also urging the watchdog to bring more financial fraud charges. But quantity isn’t the issue. The SEC has filed over 100 crisis-related suits. What’s too often lacking, as with the Citi example, is a solid case.

Jul 24, 2012
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Obama’s not the trustbuster he thought he would be

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By Reynolds Holding
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Barack Obama isn’t the trustbuster he thought he would be. The U.S. president roared into office promising an antitrust crackdown. But a new study concludes he’s no bolder than his allegedly wimpy predecessor.

Jul 24, 2012
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Do-it-yourself law firm IPO looks a bit too feisty

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By Reynolds Holding and Antony Currie
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are their own.

The upcoming stock-market debut for America’s best-known do-it-yourself law firm looks a bit feisty. Bankers are valuing LegalZoom at a whopping 40 times last year’s earnings. That’s justifiable if the online legal site can turn impressive revenue growth into consistent earnings. But potential lawsuits and rising competition are just two of the company’s biggest risks.

Jul 10, 2012
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Going broke can be true emergency for U.S. cities

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By Reynolds Holding
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Going broke can be a true state of emergency for American cities. It’s not a riot or flood, but it’s close enough to justify temporarily trimming workers’ pay, says one Nevada town. Though labor unions disagree, the argument is legally plausible and could save essential services. With more cities tumbling into insolvency, public officials need fresh ways to tighten belts.

Jun 20, 2012
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Lehman sideshow underscores regulatory gaps

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By Reynolds Holding
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

A case that’s a mere sideshow to the Lehman Brothers spectacle underscores serious regulatory gaps. Unable to bag Dick Fuld & Co, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has spent three years suing a money market fund for its exposure to the collapsed bank. But while Lehman wreaked havoc on markets, the Reserve Primary Fund made investors essentially whole. The folly is a reminder of the watchdog’s flaws.

Jun 16, 2012

Rajat Gupta goes down but insider trading may not

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.)

By Reynolds Holding

NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) – Rajat Gupta has gone down, but insider trading may not. The guilty verdicts against the former McKinsey boss and Goldman Sachs and Procter & Gamble director should scare the bejeezus out of corporate America and Wall Street. But until the rules against passing privileged information are clearly defined and miscreants truly fear getting caught, the case’s deterrence value will be limited.

Jun 13, 2012

U.S. judge deflates smartphone lawsuit bubble

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own.)

By Reynolds Holding

NEW YORK, June 13 (Reuters Breakingviews) – A U.S. judge may
have deflated the smartphone lawsuit bubble. Apple (AAPL.O: Quote, Profile, Research) ,
Samsung (005930.KS: Quote, Profile, Research) and Google’s (GOOG.O: Quote, Profile, Research) Motorola Mobility have
been waging a global war over the rights to technology that
powers features on touch-screen gizmos. But a ruling last week
exposes the extravagant claims as mere ploys to gain competitive
advantage.

Jun 8, 2012

Bankers can’t always hide behind bad legal advice

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own.)

By Reynolds Holding

NEW YORK, June 8 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Bankers can’t
always hide behind bad legal advice. A former Deutsche Bank
(DBKGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research) broker convicted in a tax-shelter scheme won’t get a
new trial because of blunders by his counsel. And yet ex-Bank of
America (BAC.N: Quote, Profile, Research) Chief Executive Ken Lewis is blaming lawyers for
seemingly insufficient disclosure before shareholders voted on
the 2008 merger with Merrill Lynch. It’s enough to give
attorneys whiplash.

    • About Reynolds

      "Reynolds Holding is a Breakingviews columnist who writes from New York about the law in conjunction with Reuters Legal. Before joining Breakingviews, he was a national editorial producer for the Law & Justice Unit at ABC News, a senior writer for Time magazine and the executive editor of Legal Affairs, the first general interest magazine about the law. He spent more than a decade as an investigative reporter and columnist for The San Francisco Chronicle, where he was named a Pulitzer Prize finalist for explanatory writing. Before becoming a journalist, he practiced corporate law at the New York firm of ..."
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