The following is from the Aug. 7, 2008, edition of CNN. Professor Alan Bromberg, who specializes in securities law at SMU's Dedman School of Law, provided expertise for this story
By Tami Luhby
CNNMoney.com senior writer
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- If your bank contacts you about a bond-like investment you made some time ago, don't ignore it. You could benefit from an unusual settlement that will allow you to get back 100% of your investment's value.
Citigroup announced Thursday that by Nov. 5 it would buy back so-called auction-rate securities from individual investors, charities and businesses with assets of $10 million or less. Hours later, Merrill Lynchannounced it too would buy back retail investors' auction-rate securities at par. Some 30,000 retail customers hold a total of $12 billion of these securities. . .
The Citi agreement settles a legal dispute with New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, and calls for the investment bank to repurchase at full value all securities of this type sold before Feb. 11. Citigroup (Fortune 500) will also reimburse all retail investors who sold their securities at a discount after the market for them shut down. . .
"This is a most unusual sort of settlement," said Alan Bromberg, securities law professor at Dedman School of Law, Southern Methodist University in Dallas, referring to the Citi deal. "This would be very generous. You could hardly ask for more." . . .
"It wouldn't surprise me to see a good number of similar cases," Bromberg said.
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