US - The state of Oregon is suing the former Bear Stearns for allegedly misleading investors, including the state's pension fund, in mortgage-backed securities.
Oregon Treasurer Ted Wheeler and attorney general John Kroger said the Oregon Public Employee Retirement Fund lost $17m through investments in mortgage-backed securities sold by the firm in 2006 and 2007. They said the securities were "vastly exaggerated in value and quality".
At the time, Bear sold $17.5bn in mortgage-backed certificates touted as high quality, investment-grade securities. But some $17bn worth was eventually downgraded to below investment grade, and some eventually downgraded to junk bond status.
"We believe that these junk investments were intentionally mislabeled and all Oregonians are still reeling from the economic fallout," said Wheeler. "If you hurt Oregonians financially, we are coming after you."
Oregon joins public employees' retirement funds in Iowa and Mississippi, the Boilermaker Blacksmith National Pension Trust and the City of Fort Lauderdale Police and Fire Retirement System among others, in an existing class action.
Bear Stears was taken over by J.P. Morgan in 2008. Officials at J.P. Morgan could not immediately be reached for comment.
Jonathan Stapleton asks whether newly-accredited professional trustees should be a statutory fixture on pension scheme boards.
Savers are being warned by the Insolvency Service to guard their pension pots from investment scammers and negligent trustees as it winds up 24 companies.
Respondents say they should only be required in certain situations as the system is not broken.