Class Action Lawsuits Seen in Wake of Dot-com Shakeout, Says Crisis Expert Jeffrey Tucker

Securities Industry and Computer Software Manufacturers Face Possible Legal

Actions as Consumers Seek Answers to Investment Losses



Apr 19, 2001, 01:00 ET from Tucker/Hall

    TAMPA, Fla., April 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Justice Department inquiries are a
 likely outcome of mounting dot-com failures, and securities industry
 broker/dealers will be the primary target, says crisis consultant Jeffrey
 Tucker, CEO of Tucker/Hall, a national crisis management company with offices
 in Tampa Bay and San Jose, Calif.
     In remarks to a business group today, Tucker said several industries will
 likely face on-going crises this year, including medical equipment
 manufacturers, the securities industry and computer software developers.
     "The medical industry has been a target of mounting frustration with
 regulators and the public for several years now," Tucker said, "but we will
 also likely see a surge in class action lawsuits in the securities industry
 and among computer software manufacturers in coming months."
     "The huge losses among institutional and individual investors this year
 have been brought on by the failure of so many young dot-com companies and the
 collapse of Wall Street's market for new issues.  I think both the Securities
 & Exchange Commission and the Justice Department will likely launch inquiries
 to see how much due diligence was paid by market makers recommending those
 stocks to the general public," Tucker said.
     "The securities industry collected fees in the hundreds of millions of
 dollars when they brought the dot-coms public.  Some of those stocks are now
 bankrupt or are trading at less than 25-cents a share.
     "I expect regulators are already poring over the carnage to see if broker-
 dealers recklessly disregarded due diligence in the race for fees and
 commissions," Tucker said.
     Tucker said the computer software industry may also see consumer actions
 escalate against industry leaders, such as Microsoft and others, who may be
 bringing new programs to market without ironing out all the glitches.  "The
 national industry trade publications are already pointing fingers at some of
 these companies, and I think there is growing outrage among consumers who are
 experiencing imperfections in products, like Microsoft's Windows 2000 and
 Microsoft NT, which may have come to market too fast," Tucker said.
     Tucker, who works with companies nationally on crisis prevention and
 crisis management, made his remarks before business leaders attending a Tampa
 Chamber of Commerce forum on crisis prevention and containment.
     Tucker said the Institute of Crisis Management in Louisville, Ky., has
 reported that the number of class action lawsuits increased 122% in 2000 over
 1999.  The largest percentages of those were consumer actions against
 management and whistle-blower cases by disgruntled workers.
 
 

SOURCE Tucker/Hall
    TAMPA, Fla., April 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Justice Department inquiries are a
 likely outcome of mounting dot-com failures, and securities industry
 broker/dealers will be the primary target, says crisis consultant Jeffrey
 Tucker, CEO of Tucker/Hall, a national crisis management company with offices
 in Tampa Bay and San Jose, Calif.
     In remarks to a business group today, Tucker said several industries will
 likely face on-going crises this year, including medical equipment
 manufacturers, the securities industry and computer software developers.
     "The medical industry has been a target of mounting frustration with
 regulators and the public for several years now," Tucker said, "but we will
 also likely see a surge in class action lawsuits in the securities industry
 and among computer software manufacturers in coming months."
     "The huge losses among institutional and individual investors this year
 have been brought on by the failure of so many young dot-com companies and the
 collapse of Wall Street's market for new issues.  I think both the Securities
 & Exchange Commission and the Justice Department will likely launch inquiries
 to see how much due diligence was paid by market makers recommending those
 stocks to the general public," Tucker said.
     "The securities industry collected fees in the hundreds of millions of
 dollars when they brought the dot-coms public.  Some of those stocks are now
 bankrupt or are trading at less than 25-cents a share.
     "I expect regulators are already poring over the carnage to see if broker-
 dealers recklessly disregarded due diligence in the race for fees and
 commissions," Tucker said.
     Tucker said the computer software industry may also see consumer actions
 escalate against industry leaders, such as Microsoft and others, who may be
 bringing new programs to market without ironing out all the glitches.  "The
 national industry trade publications are already pointing fingers at some of
 these companies, and I think there is growing outrage among consumers who are
 experiencing imperfections in products, like Microsoft's Windows 2000 and
 Microsoft NT, which may have come to market too fast," Tucker said.
     Tucker, who works with companies nationally on crisis prevention and
 crisis management, made his remarks before business leaders attending a Tampa
 Chamber of Commerce forum on crisis prevention and containment.
     Tucker said the Institute of Crisis Management in Louisville, Ky., has
 reported that the number of class action lawsuits increased 122% in 2000 over
 1999.  The largest percentages of those were consumer actions against
 management and whistle-blower cases by disgruntled workers.
 
 SOURCE  Tucker/Hall