According to a recent release from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), they have “charged the holding company for one of Florida’s largest banks and its top executive with misleading investors about growing problems in one of its significant loan portfolios early in the financial crisis.” The SEC has alleged that BankAtlantic Bancorp and CEO Alan Levan “made misleading statements in public filings and earnings calls in order to hide the deteriorating state of a large portion of the bank’s commercial residential real estate land acquisition and development portfolio in 2007.” Further allegations include fraudulent accounting when seeking to “minimize BankAtlantic’s losses on their books.” The alleged fraud and misleading statements made by BankAtlatic Bancorp may have resulted in unnecessary damage to some investors.
It appears that BankAtlantic may have been consciously hiding information from investors and when “BankAtlantic finally acknowledged the problems in the third quarter of 2007 by announcing a large unexpected loss. The investing public did not expect a loss of that magnitude, and BankAtlantic’s share price immediately dropped 37 percent.” The SEC is seeking “financial penalties and permanent injunctive relief against BankAtlantic and Levan to enjoin them from future violations of the federal securities laws.” This may not comfort retail investors who suffered investment losses due to alleged fraud of BankAtlantic and Mr. Levan. However, investors may be able to seek recovery on their investment through an individual securities arbitration claim.
If you suffered investment losses as a result of Bank Atlantic Bancorp’s alleged failure to disclose a deteriorating portfolio in 2007 and would like to speak to a securities attorney about your potential to recover your investment through a securities arbitration claim please call our Chicago office at 312-238-9650.
The White Law Group, LLC is a securities fraud, securities arbitration, investor protection, and securities regulation/compliance law firm with offices in Chicago, Illinois and Boca Raton, Florida.
For more information on The White Law Group, please visit our website at http://www.whitesecuritieslaw.com.