Berman Tabacco

CalPERS v. Moody’s

California Public Employees’ Retirement System v. Moody’s Corp., No. CGC-09-490241 (Cal. Super. Ct. San Francisco Cty.)

Berman Tabacco was sole counsel representing California Public Employees’ Retirement System (“CalPERS”) in this individual action alleging that several major credit ratings agencies made negligent misrepresentations in issuing “Aaa” ratings for certain Structured Investment Vehicles. The firm negotiated a total of $255 million in settlements with Moody’s (defendants Moody’s Corp. and Moody’s Investors’ Services, Inc.) and McGraw Hill Companies, Inc. (“S&P”) on CalPERS’ behalf. This case was groundbreaking for two reasons. First, the settlements rank as the largest known recoveries from Moody’s and S&P in a private lawsuit for civil damages. Second, the case resulted in a published appellate court opinion finding that rating agencies can, in certain circumstances, be liable for negligent misrepresentations under California law for their ratings of privately placed securities. Cal. Pub. Empls.’ Ret. Sys. v. Moody’s Inv’rs Serv., Inc., 226 Cal. App. 4th 643 (2014).

Case Information

  • Settlement Amount:
    $255,000,000