2007 Securities Litigation Study, April 2008 (77 pages, PDF): “By far, the most significant happening in 2007 was the unfolding of what has become known as the subprime crisis. Early in the year, amid a falling housing market, increasing interest rates, and a surge in foreclosures, subprime lenders began declaring bankruptcy, announcing significant losses, and/or making themselves available for sale.
Additionally, Wall Street investment banks began to disclose losses in securities portfolios backed by subprime loansand thus the subprime crisis was born. To date, approximately $130 billion in losses related to subprime issues have been reported by most of the major investment banks, including UBS, Goldman Sachs, and Merrill Lynch, and many subprime-related institutions have filed for bankruptcy.
Regulators and prosecutors, including the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and state attorneys general, are now conducting investigations in the quest to determine the who, what, when, where, why, and how of this debacle. In early February 2007, the plaintiffs bar began issuing federal class action lawsuits, and the stream of private securities litigationagainst the loan originators, banks, and rating agencies involved in the secondary and securitized mortgage marketcontinues into 2008.”