2016-19 Customer Award Survey in an Era of Securities Arbitration Stability
Posted on Categories Arbitration Awards, Feature Article, Statistics & SurveysTags , , ,

By Harry A. Jacobowitz*

Introduction

Every so often, we take stock of how FINRA arbitration results change over time, by analyzing Award win rates and damage recoveries year-to-year. In the past, the multi-year Award surveys published by SAC have occurred in times of rising or falling Award frequency, the former caused by market trauma and the latter by FINRA working through the resulting surfeit of cases. But what happens when Award volume is stable year after year?

In the last four calendar years, as this Survey will show, FINRA has “flattened the curve” of Award frequency in customer-initiated cases to an amazing degree. The question we hope to answer is whether customer claimants’ chances of winning their cases, the proportion of their damage requests they may expect to recover, and the total amounts of damages they receive, also remain stable.

Our last Award survey to cover the same ground was “2013 Award Survey: A Cycle Perspective” (Vol. 2014, No. 2 (Jun. ’14), pp. 1, 2-10, hereinafter “2013 Survey”), which covered the calendar years 2007-13. That period began at a time of declining Award volume, before the 2007-08 market crash caused a sharp rise in Awards (in 2009 for Small Claims and 2010 for Customer-Member Awards), and ends in another period of declining Award volume. It is therefore an apt comparison to this Survey in judging the effect of Award volume stability.

We strongly suspect that the currently stable Award volume will not survive contact with the current pandemic. With FINRA’s moratorium on live hearings this spring and the uncertain effects of social distancing on the pace of arbitration in other ways, we may expect a further, coronavirus-infected reduction in Award frequency this year.[1] It is therefore the right time to study the foregoing questions.

Award Volume and Win Rates

We classify customer-initiated cases into three categories:  Customer-Member, Customer-Employee and Small Claims. Small Claims (SC) cases are those in which the customer requests no more than $50,000 in compensatory damages. Customer-Member (CM) cases are those brought by customers against at least one FINRA member or other securities firm, with or without other respondents, and either request in excess of $50,000 or an unspecified amount of compensatory damages. Many CM Awards are “stipulated,” which means that they are issued after the parties settle the customers’ claims, generally so that the arbitrators can rule on brokers’ motions to expunge the arbitration from their registration records. In Customer-Employee cases, the investor sues only individual brokers or investment advisors, but those are so rare that we can safely ignore them for purposes of this Survey.

In Chart 1, we report the total number of non-stipulated Awards, the number of “win” Awards (those in which the customer recovered at least one cent of damages) and the “win rate” (the number of wins divided by the number of non-stipulated Awards) for CM and SC Awards in each year surveyed. It also shows the win rates for all Awards in customer-initiated cases (i.e., both categories combined). The Chart reveals that, year to year, the number of non-stipulated CM cases ranged from 231 to 249, the number of win Awards ranged even more narrowly from 102 to 105, and the win rates ranged from 42% to 44%, virtually no variation to speak of.

Looking at SC Awards, we see a picture not quite so pat. The 140 non-stipulated Awards issued in 2016 were high in number, compared to the 87 to 113 in the three succeeding years. The number of win Awards that first Survey year was commensurately high (45), compared to the 31 to 35 in 2017-19. Win rates for Small Claims cases historically run lower than for the larger cases. The win rates ranged between 31% and 36% for SC Awards and since, as noted above, win rates for CM Awards taken alone were 42% to 44%, that yielded win rates of 38% to 42% for customer-initiated Awards overall.

It does not seem that the higher volume of SC Awards in 2016 had an impact on the win rate (32%) for the 2016 group. Why was there a higher percentage of SC Awards? SC cases have significantly shorter average turnaround times than CM Awards, so we can rule out the possibility that the 2016 bump in SC Award frequency is a relic of a more active phase of customer arbitration. More likely, it is merely due to the fact that SC Awards are smaller in number and smaller samples display more statistical “noise” than larger ones.

How do these patterns differ from those in the 2013 Survey? The win rates were lowest at the beginning of the surveyed period, 2007 (CM 37%, SC 29%), rising to a high in 2009 and 2010 (CM 51 & 52%, SC 40 & 41%), then falling again, reaching 41% for CM Awards in 2013 and 35% for SC Awards in 2012-13. Interestingly, the period of rising win rates began during a period of falling Award volume and reached their heights during two years of rising CM Award volume and the highest SC Award volumes of the period, while the falling win rates occurred during periods of consistently falling Award volume. Thus, while changing Award volumes do appear to coincide with changing win rates, the relationship between those variables are not exact.

Chart 1

Non-Stipulated Customer-Initiated Award Volume & Win Rates
By Type of Dispute & Year
Year Customer/Member (CM) Small Claims (SC) All Cust.
Wins/All (#) Win Rate (%) Wins/All (#) Win Rate (%) Wins (%)
2016 104/249 42% 45/140 32% 38%
2017 104/239 44% 34/99 34% 41%
2018 105/247 43% 35/113 31% 39%
2019 102/231 44% 31/87 36% 42%
All Years 415/966 43% 145/439 33% 40%

Notes to Chart:

  1. Stipulated Awards are excluded from the figures. Awards that were amended during the period surveyed are counted in the year in which their last version issued.
  2. A “win” Award is one in which the customer claimant recovers any amount of damages, no matter how small. The “win rate” is determined by dividing the number of “win” Awards by the total number of non-stipulated Awards.

 

Customer-Member Win Rates & Panel Composition

In Chart 2, we bore down on CM Awards for a closer look. FINRA’s Code of Arbitration Procedure provides for three configurations of arbitrators in CM cases. A single public arbitrator (i.e., one without a connection to the securities industry) is the standard in cases with compensatory damage claims not in excess of $100,000, and three arbitrators are standard in cases requesting larger or no specific compensatory damage amounts. Three-member panels may be composed of either three public arbitrators (the All-Public Panel, or APP) or two public and one industry arbitrator (the Majority Public Panel, or MPP). We exclude from our sample four Awards in which the Panel consisted of two arbitrators (either both public or one public and one industry), as their need to resolve a possible deadlock might alter the calculus of decision.

When we compare the win rates of Awards issued by each type of arbitration panel to CM Awards overall, we find no consistent pattern. Single arbitrators were less likely to favor customers than were three-person panels in 2016 and 2017, but decidedly more likely to favor customers in 2018 and especially in 2019 (55% vs. 42%!). APPs were more likely to award damages than MPPs in every year but 2018, when their win rates were lower. MPPs scored markedly lower in 2017 (37% vs. 48%) and 2019 (25% vs. 49%!). Overall, single arbitrators and APPs attained the same high percentage in awarding damages to customers, but single arbitrator results swung wildly between 29% and 55%, while APPs drew a much tighter range (40% to 49%). Still, the single arbitrator results for 2018 and 2019 are worth watching, should they signal some kind of trend shift.

FINRA introduced the APP because of complaints from customers and their counsel that MPPs introduced a pro-industry bias. The Chart shows a decided preference for APPs over MPPs (546 vs. 246 non-stipulated Awards, assuming similar settlement rates) and the win rate figures suggest that this preference is justified. So, what accounts for the year-to-year variation? It's possible there's a material difference in the case profiles. It's certainly possible that the Non-Public Arbitrator on the MPP-Panel has a mitigating impact, although we would not conclude that from these results. It is similarly feasible that APPs display a collective bias to some degree (see Chart 3 on recovery rates, in that regard).

Probably, though, the variations are due to the tendency of small samples to vary more widely (as we noted with respect to SC Awards). MPP results can be expected to grow more erratic as their place in customer arbitration dwindles. Note, in that regard, the broad win-rate range of 25% to 44% among the MPPs from to year. Interestingly, too, 2019 Awards were characterized by a significantly more pronounced preference for APPs over MPPs (almost three to one) than in past years. In other words, it won't matter what the reason is; if Claimants' counsel believes they'll do better before APPs, that perception will increasingly drive the choice.

Chart 2

Non-Stipulated Customer-Member Award Volume & Win Rates
By Panel Composition & Year
Year Single Arbitrators All-Public Panels Majority Public Panels
Wins/All (#) Win Rate (%) Wins/All (#) Win Rate (%) Win/All (#) Win Rate (%)
2016 15/38 39% 59/137 43%  27/70 39%
2017 17/44 39% 63/130 48%  23/63 37%
2018 16/33 48% 60/150 40%  27/62 44%
2019 18/33 55% 71/146 49% 13/52 25%
All Years 66/148 45% 254/564 45% 89/246 36%

Notes to Chart:

  1. Stipulated Awards are excluded from the figures. Awards that were amended during the period surveyed are counted in the year in which their last version issued. Win rates for the "three-person panels overall (i.e., for all APPs and MPPs surveyed) are 42%, 45%, 41%, and 42%, for 2016-2019, respectively.
  2. A “win” Award is one in which the customer claimant recovers any amount of damages, no matter how small. The “win rate” is determined by dividing the number of “win” Awards by the total number of non-stipulated Awards.
  3. A “single Arbitrator” Award is one issued by a sole public Arbitrator. An “All-Public Panel” Award is one issued by an arbitration panel composed of three public arbitrators.  A “Majority Public Panel” Award is one issued by an arbitration panel composed of two public and one industry arbitrator.  Two-member panels are excluded.  Panel composition is determined as of the date of Award issuance.

 

Customer-Member Recovery Rates

While so-called “win rates” quantify how often customers succeed in recovering damages, we use a different measure, the recovery rate, to determine the percentage of the damages claimants request that the arbitrators actually award them. We typically use two versions of the recovery rate: the average and the median. The average recovery rate (ARR) may be derived by dividing the average amount of damages awarded per Award (including all types of damages) by the average amount of compensatory damages requested. The median recovery rate (MRR) divides the median amount of total damages awarded by the median compensatory damage claim in a given set of Awards.

The use of compensatory damages requested and the total amount awarded might appear to be an “apples and oranges” comparison, but we have a rational reason to choose these particular measures. Claimants often only specify their compensatory damages in their requests for relief, if they specify anything, since the compensatory damage figure affects the size of the arbitration panel and the amounts of arbitration fees. Therefore, as a practical matter, compensatory claims are the only reliable guide to the size of damage claims. Moreover, claimants can usually expect the arbitrators to award only compensatory damages, so it is sensible to limit the claim to that type of damages. On the other hand, when claimants do receive other types of damages in addition to compensatory damages, it is worth taking that into account in judging arbitrator generosity.

Both methods are problematic when applied to all win Awards in any given type of dispute. The fact that some claimants do not specify the amounts of their compensatory damage claims (which means that they do not count in the calculations  means that the divisor will understate their amounts in each formula, thereby inflating the average and median recovery rates alike. The ARR may also be deflated by the unrealistically high compensatory damage requests that some claimants make. MRR treats that drawback, but may be significantly affected by arbitrary variations in the two median figures on which we base the recovery rate.[2]

In Chart 3, we address these problems by (1) excluding Awards listing a compensatory damage request of more than $1 million, (2) excluding Awards that do not specify compensatory damages and (3) using the ARR. The first limitation limits a depressive effect on the recovery rate and the second works in the opposite direction. With these problems eliminated, the ARR proves more reliable than the MRR (indeed, when applied to this subset of Awards, the MRR varies from 48% to 72% from year to year). We also compare the ARRs in the Awards of single Arbitrators, APPs and MPPs. The Chart reports the average amounts awarded and the average compensatory damage claims, and then calculates the ARR, for each calendar year and the full period, and for each type of panel composition.

The Chart again shows remarkable conformity from year to year for the entire set (in a range of 75-77%), but significant variation when broken down by panel composition. As was true of the win rates, All-Public Panels tended to have higher ARRs, but the gap varied significantly by year and there was one year (in this case, 2017) in which the trend reversed by a narrow margin (favoring Majority Public Panels 77% to 75%). The pro-APP tilt is moderate in 2016 and 2018 (6% and 7% greater, respectively), but the gap becomes a chasm in 2018 (88% vs. 50%), just as it jumped for win rates. Overall, ARRs were 10 points higher for APPs than MPPs (77% vs. 67%). Clearly, APPs have been generally more liberal than MPPs in the proportion of their requests they grant customer claimants, just as they have been with respect to win rates.

We include single arbitrator win Awards for completeness, despite their very small numbers (12 to 17 Awards per year). They generally had the highest ARRs (in one year, 2018, exceeding 100%, thanks to two Awards with high punitive damage awards included in the award totals), except in 2019, when single-arbitrator ARRs dropped dramatically compared to the previous three years, and APPs exceeded them by a substantial margin. We would expect single Arbitrators to have high ARRs, because they are the default composition for customer claims of $100,000 or less. Surprisingly, though, a majority (28/55) of CM Awards decided by single Arbitrators included in Chart 3 have compensatory damage claims exceeding $100,000, while 10 APP and 3 MPP Awards have claims of $50,000 to no more than $100,000. Taking into consideration all of the results, it is clear that panels with no industry arbitrators are decidedly more generous than mixed panels each year of this Survey, once again seemingly vindicating the assumptions of customers and their counsel who advocated for the APP.

The 2013 Survey did not break down the ARRs by panel composition, but did give the ARRs each year for CM Awards with specific compensatory damage claims of $25,001 (at that time, the lower limit for CM cases) and $1 million. The ARRs varied from lows of 53% in 2007 and 54% in 2011 to 69% in 2012 and a whopping 88% in 2013. As with win rates, then, significant changes in Award volume coincided with equally (if not more) variation in ARRs, but the actual relationship between those changes was obscure.

Chart 3

Customer-Member "Win" Award Average Recovery Rates
 With $50,000-$1 Million Compensatory Damage Claims, by Panel Composition & Year
Year All Single Arbitrators All-Public Panels Majority Public Panels
Avg. Total Amount Awarded/ Avg. Comp. Claim ($) Avg. Recovery Rate (%) Avg. Total Amount Awarded/ Avg. Comp. Claim ($) Avg. Recovery Rate (%) Avg. Total Amount Awarded/ Avg. Comp. Claim ($) Avg. Recovery Rate (%) Avg. Total Amount Awarded/ Avg. Comp. Claim ($) Avg. Recovery Rate (%)
2016 $162.1K/ $210.3K 77% $183.1K/ $222.5K 82% $241.5K/ $304.0K 79% $383.9K/ $304.0K 73%
2017 $277.9K/ $360.7K 77% $140.0K/ $148.3K 94% $343.1K/ $459.1K 75% $254.7K/ $329.3K 77%
2018 $314.4K/ $422.3K 76% $359.3K/ $320.3K 112% $343.0K/ $493.1K 72% $233.4K/ $360.9K 65%
2019 $243.3K/ $323.8K 75% $92.5K/ $141.7K 60% $306.1K/ $363.8K 88% $206.9K/ $414.9K 50%
All Years $275.9K/ $363.7K 76% $183.3K/ $200.4K 92% $311.0K/ $408.6K 77% $273.1K/ $408.6K 67%

Notes to Chart:

  1. Only Awards in which the customer claimant recovers damages are included. Counterclaim Awards are not considered.  Awards in which the claimant requested unspecified compensatory damages or more than $1 million in compensatory damages are deliberately omitted to avoid skewing effects.  Awards that were amended during the period surveyed are counted in the year in which their last version issued.
  2. Average recoveries are determined by aggregating the amounts awarded in each case and the compensatory damage claims in each case and dividing each figure by the number of win “Awards.” Dollar figures are rounded to the nearest $100 and divided by $1000 (represented by a “K” in figure reported. For example, $52,667 would be expressed as “$52.7K.”
  3. The average recovery rate is determined by dividing the average total amount awarded by the average compensatory damage claim.
  4. A “single Arbitrator” Award is one issued by a sole public Arbitrator. An “All-Public Panel” Award is one issued by an arbitration panel composed of three public arbitrators.  A “Majority Public Panel” Award is one issued by an arbitration panel composed of two public and one industry arbitrator.  Two-member panels are excluded.  Panel composition is determined as of the date of Award issuance.

 

Small Claims Awards: A Closer Look

SC cases are always decided by single public arbitrators, but there are two other dimensions worth examining. The default manner of decision is “on the papers,” our term for a procedure in which the arbitrator merely examines the parties’ pleadings and other written submissions. However, the parties also have the option of requesting an evidentiary hearing on the merits of the claim. In addition, although customers may retain counsel to represent them, many customers may deem hiring counsel too expensive for the damages they expect to recover, and may opt to appear pro se. In Chart 4, we examine how these factors affect win rates.

One might expect that merit hearings (as opposed to hearings solely to decide expungement requests), which give claimants the opportunity to respond to questions not sufficiently answered on the papers, would increase win rates, but that is not what we find. There was no significant difference in the win rates in 2016 and 2017, but the rates are significantly lower for cases involving merits hearings than those submitted on the papers in 2018 (17% vs. 39%) and 2019 (27% vs. 42%). Curiously, although merits hearings were only used 10-16% of the time in 2016-18, they jumped to 43% in 2019.

Customer claimants were more likely to appear pro se than with counsel, but with worse results, in three of the four years (2016-17, 2019). The effect was especially apparent in the last year, when claimants represented themselves in 60% of the cases, but were only half as likely to win as those with counsel. Even in the one exception to both rules, 2017, pro se litigants were neither significantly more prevalent in Awards, nor significantly more likely to win than their counsel-represented counterparts. Incidentally, the same win rate patterns appeared in the 2013 Survey.

What accounts for the lower win rates in merit hearings Awards? One theory we considered was that counsel were more likely to opt for submission on the “papers” than unrepresented clients, but that turned out to be a red herring. On the contrary, in fact: during the entire four-year period we surveyed, counsel opted for merit hearings 31% of the time (60/198), whereas pro se litigants did so only 25% of the time (60/241). When they did so, the latter performed terribly, winning only 17% of the time (10/60). However, even counsel did more poorly in merit hearings, winning 21 out of 61 times (34%), than they did when they relied on the papers and earned a 44% win rate (50/121). One possible explanation is that merit hearings give respondents a better opportunity to rebut the claimant’s case than they give the claimant to bolster it.

However, that might only be a partial answer. We noticed that the proportion of non-stipulated Awards decided on merit hearings spiked in 2019 (43%) and wondered whether that might give us a clue. When we omitted 2019 from the figures, we found no significant difference in most of the figures. The greatest disparity was in merit hearings of represented parties, with a win rate down from 29% to 34% (12/42). When we focused exclusively on the same category of cases in 2019, however, the win rate jumped to 47% (9/19), slightly better than the 42% rate (10/24) when counsel rested on the papers that year. It is hazardous to draw any conclusions from such a small and ambiguous finding, but one possible explanation is that respondents are usually settling “bad” cases scheduled for merit hearings, perhaps because the preparation for the hearing reveals the tenuousness of their defense. Assuming that’s the case, it leaves the question of why they were less likely to settle such cases in 2019 unanswered.

Chart 4

Year Merit Hearings On the Papers Cs Pro Se Cs w/ Counsel
Win/All (#) Win/All (#) Win/All (#) Win/All (#)
Win Rate (%) Win Rate (%) Win Rate (%) Win Rate (%)
2016 7/23 38/117 18/75 27/65
30% 32% 24% 42%
2017 7/20 27/79 16/47 18/52
35% 34% 34% 35%
2018 7/41 28/72 17/67 18/46
17% 39% 25% 35%
2019 10/37 21/50 13/52 18/35
27% 42% 25% 51%
All Years 31/121 114/318 64/241 81/198
26% 36% 27% 41%

Notes to Chart:

  1. Stipulated Awards are excluded from the figures. Awards that were amended during the period surveyed are counted in the year in which their last version issued.
  2. A “win” Award is one in which the customer claimant recovers any amount of damages, no matter how small. The “win rate” is determined by dividing the number of “win” Awards by the total number of non-stipulated Awards.
  3. A “merits hearing” Award is one describing a case in which the customer was given an opportunity to present oral evidence on his or her case before the Arbitrator ruled on it. It does not include cases in which oral evidence was allowed only on a broker’s expungement request.

 

Damages Awarded

Finally, Chart 5 reports the total amounts of damages awarded (TAA) and two sub-categories of damages, punitive damages and attorney fees, for all CM and all SC Awards issued each year and in the full four-year period as a whole. Here, we find the most variation. The TAA for CM Awards ranged from a high of $114.3 million in 2016 to a low of $72.7 million the following year. Curiously, despite the fact that 2018 saw the highest win rate in Chart 1 and the highest ARR in Chart 3 (which, as noted, does not include all CM Awards), it had the second-lowest TAA of any year (only $81.8 million). Attorney fees likewise varied from $5.8 million in 2019 to $7.2 million in 2017. Meanwhile, punitive damages showed exceptional variation, ranging from a low of $1.9 million in 2019 to a high of $10.7 million in 2018, more than five times the former.

Despite the modesty of the compensatory damage requests (a maximum of $50,000), SC Awards display even a greater range of TAAs than CM Awards – from $0.6 million in 2017 to $1.2 million the previous year, about twice as much. Attorney fees swung wildly between $500 in 2017 and $41.4 thousand in 2017. Punitive damages played no role at all, since no arbitrator awarded them in any SC case in any of those four years. The greatest contributor to the swings to SC TAAs, then, were compensatory damage awards. Of course, the 2013 Award Survey revealed even greater variation in damage totals from year to year for both types of dispute; indeed, it would have shocking if that was not the case.

Chart 5

Total Amounts Awarded ($) by Type of Dispute & Year (2016-19)
Year Customer-Member Small Claims
Total Amount Awarded ($) Punitive Damages ($) Attorney Fees Awarded Total Amount Awarded ($) Punitive Damages ($) Attorney Fees Awarded
2016 $114M $7.0M $6.3M $1.2M $0 $41.4K
2017 $72.9M $7.2M $7.2M $606.8K $0 $0.5K
2018 $85.7M $10.7M $9.8M $770.5K $0 $20.0K
2019 $81.8M $1.9M $5.8M $529.4K $0 $30.0K
All Years $354.7M $26.8M $29.8M $3.1M $0 $91.9K

Notes to Chart:

  1. Awards that were amended during the period surveyed are counted in the year in which their last version issued.
  2. The average recovery rate is determined by dividing the aggregate amount of the total amount awarded in all Awards described by the aggregate amounts of the compensatory damage claims for those Awards.
  3. By referring to the number of “win” Awards reflected in each type of dispute and each year or “All Years” in Chart 1 and dividing that number into the equivalent total amount awarded figure above, one can determine the average amount awarded in a given set (including those Awards excluded from Chart 3 because their compensatory damage claims were unspecified or exceeded $1 million). For instance, dividing the 104 Customer/Member “win” Awards for the year 2016 from Chart 1 into the $114.3M figure for 2016 Customer/Member Awards in the above Chart ($114.3M/104) yields an average of $1.1K.

 

Conclusion

The remarkable stability of CM Award frequency during the period 2016-19 is reflected in the equally remarkable stability of win rates for the same type of dispute and for customer-initiated Awards in general, as well as the ARRs for CM Awards in cases where the customer requested $50,000 to $1 million in compensatory damages. The findings, with core results in bold:

  • The figures become more variable when one breaks them down by panel composition type, something which we ascribe to the statistical noise inherent in smaller samples. Nevertheless, the figures indicate that it may be advantageous for customers, when selecting three-member panels, to choose APPs rather than MPPs. The former usually gave customers both higher win rates and higher average recoveries than the latter, occasionally by large margins.

 

  • Sole public Arbitrators, whom we expected to have high ARRs, given the modesty of the compensatory damage claims involved, also gave customers win rates matching those of APPs in the period as a whole. This might mean that it is the absence of industry arbitrator input into the decision that is the most important factor.

 

  • SC Award volume is a bit more variable -- again, we think, due to the smaller number of Awards, and the win rates for SC Awards as a whole (31-35% each year) were accordingly slightly more variable than those for CM Awards. When we break down those figures by mode of evidential presentation (hearings on the merits vs. submission on the papers) and representation (pro se appearance by counsel), the variation from year to year is even greater, but we can draw some firm conclusions. First, there is no clear benefit to seeking a hearing, and it appears most claimants do not do so. Secondly, there is a definite advantage to putting one’s case in the hands of an attorney, and it seems that claimants are taking that route more frequently.

 

  • Stable Award volumes, win rates and ARRs are not even slightly reflected in the amounts of damages awarded, which vary significantly for both CM and SC types of dispute, and especially for SC Award The variations in CM Awards (except for the sharp drop in punitive damage awards in 2019) were relatively moderate. By contrast, TAAs and attorney fees were all over the place in SC Awards (punitive damages were a non-factor).

 

What should we expect in 2020? Award volume should drop sharply and with that, if 2016-19 is any hint, that should increase the variation overall. Even the most stable variables – overall CM win and recovery rates – will be unlikely to reflect the stability we have seen. And perhaps the next time we study the numbers we’ll also be gauging the impact of virtual hearings resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. But we shall see.

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*Harry A. Jacobowitz is the owner and operator of HAJ Research and Writing LLC, a company specializing in researching and writing on legal issues and related subjects. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School with more than 30 years of experience in the legal and legal publishing fields, Mr. Jacobowitz is a former manager of SAC’s securities Awards database and currently serves in a consulting capacity to SAC and the Alert. HAJ Research and Writing LLC is available to perform customized searches of the database for SAC subscribers and others. Mr. Jacobowitz and his company may be reached at harryjacobowitz@optimum.net.         

[1] For an analysis of potential pandemic-related impacts on securities arbitration, see G. Friedman and R. Ryder, What’s Past is Prologue – All Over Again. What’s Ahead for Arbitration Filings in the Wake of Recent Volatility, SAC Blog (Mar. 2, 2020.)

[2] For more on the relevance of the “win rate” stat, see Lipner, Seth, Study of Arbitration Recovery Statistics, The Neutral Corner (June 2006). Prof. Lipner, a prominent investors’ attorney and a past president of PIABA, asserts that this is an unsound measure. We believe that our precautions and a sizeable sample ameliorate reliability. Moreover, it's an essential statistic to address the question, “how well does the customer do in arbitration?”

 

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