Interactive Data Corporation (NYSE: IDC), a leading provider of financial market data, analytics and related solutions, today announced that its Pricing and Reference Data business has formed an alliance with Goal Group Limited (Goal), a leading UK-based global class actions service specialist, to provide a comprehensive, outsourced class actions service designed to support investors and corporations throughout the entire lifecycle of a securities class action.
Securities class action litigation may be instituted on behalf of shareholders (the 'class') who have suffered an economic loss arising from a violation of the securities laws. Most securities class actions have historically been filed in the US, but with the introduction of legislation to support strong corporate governance, such lawsuits are spreading across Europe, Australia and Asia.
Financial institutions are increasingly paying closer attention to developments related to securities class action litigation. Yet, for a variety of reasons, global institutional investors do not always submit claim forms in situations where they may be eligible for recovery. One reason may be that investors are not aware that a judgement has been entered or that a lawsuit has been settled or even filed. According to research conducted by Goal, between 2000 and 2007 more than US $12 billion in settlement compensation awarded by the courts was unclaimed in class actions, bankruptcies and disgorgements. To date, Goal has helped its clients recover over US $280 million in compensation.
Information from Interactive Data's class actions service, which has been helping financial institutions track, monitor and recover funds emanating from securities class action litigation since 2005, has now been incorporated into Goal's fully-outsourced solution designed to help clients manage and navigate the securities class action process and recoup funds where applicable. This information includes details of securities class action litigation filed, with critical dates and data, and the relevant security identifiers - all in standard ISO 15022 format.
Using its ISO 9001 accredited technology, Goal undertakes research, analysis and calculations on behalf of clients, and completes any applicable claim documentation. This is then emailed to the client, clearly indicating any additional information required from the client prior to filing with the court or other governmental agency overseeing the class action. Goal's solution allows clients to access an online reporting facility that provides the security identifier, together with the class period, settlement fund and any applicable proof of claim deadline. Also available are a current case settlement diary that provides an overview of impending cases and an activity statement with information on the status of ongoing and collected claims.
Anthony Neville, European divisional director, Interactive Data, commented: "Class actions provide potential redress to investors who have suffered loss as a result of violations of the securities laws - and these actions have been increasing with the market turmoil. Finding a system that is capable of compiling and disseminating class action information is critical. We have been collecting and distributing corporate actions data to the financial industry for more than 20 years and have used this expertise, along with the relationships cultivated with major claims administrators and plaintiffs' counsel, to provide a comprehensive class actions data service."
Stephen Everard, managing director of Goal, added: "Our cutting-edge, highly-automated technology eliminates manual processes, which helps to reduce operational risk and create virtual straight-through processing - from the capture and scanning of client data through to the completion of the claim documentation. Our clients worldwide include corporate pension funds, local government agencies, global custodians, prime brokerage houses, asset managers, investment banks and fund managers."