NEW YORK, July 22, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Bragar Eagel & Squire, P.C., a nationally recognized shareholder rights law firm, reminds investors that class actions have been commenced on behalf of stockholders of Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC), Hebron Technology Co., Ltd. (NASDAQ: HEBT), Co-Diagnostics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CODX), and ProAssurance Corporation (NYSE: PRA). Stockholders have until the deadlines below to petition the court to serve as lead plaintiff. Additional information about each case can be found at the link provided.
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC)
Class Period: February 2, 2018 to May 5, 2020
Lead Plaintiff Deadline: August 3, 2020
On April 5, 2020, Wells Fargo announced that it had received strong interest in the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”), a program under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”), and was targeting to distribute a total of $10 billion to small business customers under the requirements of the PPP.
On April 8, 2020, the Federal Reserve announced that it would allow Wells Fargo to exceed the asset cap that it had imposed on Wells Fargo in 2018 after revelations that the Company had opened millions of accounts in customers’ names without their permission, a change which would allow Wells Fargo to make additional small business loans as part of the PPP.
That same day, Wells Fargo issued a press release stating, in relevant part, that, “beginning immediately, in response to the actions by the Federal Reserve, [Wells Fargo] will expand its participation in the [PPP] and offer loans to a broader set of its small business and nonprofit customers subject to the terms of the program.”
On April 19, 2020, after at least one lawsuit was filed against the Company, reports emerged that Wells Fargo may have unfairly allocated government-backed loans under the PPP. For example, USA Today reported that “[t]he lawsuit filed on behalf of small business owners on Sunday alleges that Wells Fargo unfairly prioritized businesses seeking large loan amounts, while the government’s small business agency has said that PPP loan applications would be processed on a first-come, first-served basis.” According to the lawsuit, “[t]he move by Wells Fargo meant that the bank would receive millions more dollars in processing fees,” and, “[m]aking matters worse, Wells Fargo concealed from the public that it was reshuffling the PPP applications it received and prioritizing the applications that would make the bank the most money.”
Following this news, Wells Fargo’s stock price fell more than 5% over two trading days to close at $26.84 per share on April 21, 2020.
Finally, on May 5, 2020, Wells Fargo filed a quarterly report on Form 10-Q with the Securities and Exchange Commission, disclosing, in addition to multiple PPP-related lawsuits initiated against the Company, that Wells Fargo had “received formal and informal inquiries from federal and state governmental agencies regarding its offering of PPP loans.”
Following this news, Wells Fargo’s stock price fell by more than 6% over two trading days from its closing price on May 4, 2020, closing at $25.61 per share on May 6, 2020.
The complaint, filed on June 4, 2020, alleges that throughout the Class Period defendants made materially false and/or misleading statements, as well as failed to disclose material adverse facts about Wells Fargo’s business, operations, and prospects. Specifically, defendants failed to disclose to investors that: (i) Wells Fargo planned to, and did, improperly allocate government-backed loans under the PPP, and/or had inadequate controls in place to prevent such misallocation; (ii) the foregoing foreseeably increased the Company’s litigation risk with respect to PPP allocation, as well as increased regulatory scrutiny and/or potential enforcement actions; and (iii) as a result, the Company’s public statements were materially false and misleading at all relevant times.
For more information on the Wells Fargo class action go to: https://bespc.com/WFC-2
Hebron Technology Co., Ltd. (NASDAQ: HEBT)
Class Period: April 24, 2020 to June 3, 2020
Lead Plaintiff Deadline: August 10, 2020
On June 3, 2020, Grizzly Research presented a report alleging that Hebron is an “insider enrichment scheme without economic basis,” citing questionable transactions including an undisclosed related party transaction for nearly $26 million.
On this news, the Company’s share price fell $8.26, or nearly 37%, to close at $14.29 per share on June 3, 2020. The stock continued to decline the next trading session by $2.51, or nearly 18%, to close at $11.78 per share on June 4, 2020.
The complaint, filed on June 9, 2020, alleges that throughout the Class Period defendants made materially false and/or misleading statements, as well as failed to disclose material adverse facts about the Company’s business, operations, and prospects. Specifically, defendants failed to disclose to investors: (1) that many of Hebron’s acquisitions, including Beijing Hengpu and Nami Holding (Cayman) Co., Ltd., involved undisclosed related parties; (2) that the Company’s disclosure controls regarding related party transactions was ineffective; and (3) that, as a result of the foregoing, defendants’ positive statements about the Company’s business, operations, and prospects, were materially misleading and/or lacked a reasonable basis.
For more information on the Hebron Technology class action go to: https://bespc.com/HEBT
Co-Diagnostics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CODX)
Class Period: February 25, 2020 to May 15, 2020
Lead Plaintiff Deadline: August 17, 2020
Co-Diagnostics announced that it had received regulatory clearance to sell its Covid-19 tests in the European Community on February 24, 2020—the first company in the world to receive this clearance. Then, on April 6, 2020 the Company announced that it had received emergency use authorization for its tests from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”).
Throughout this time and thereafter, Co-Diagnostics, its Chief Technology Officer, and its other officers and directors made unequivocal statements to the market that its Covid-19 tests were 100% accurate—a staggering claim that appeared to set Co-Diagnostics apart from other competitors developing Covid-19 tests
However, on May 14, 2020, after Co-Diagnostics maintained its statements about the success of its test in its first quarter 2020 results, public reports began circulating questioning Co-Diagnostics’ claims of 100% accuracy because the Company was reluctant to participate in U.S.-based testing to verify its claims. Later that evening, the FDA announced publicly that no COVID-19 test is 100% accurate.
On this news, the stock declined 42% from a high of $29.72 per share on May 14, 2020, to close at $17.07 per share on May 15, 2020.
For more information on the Co-Diagnostics class action go to: https://bespc.com/CODX
ProAssurance Corporation (NYSE: PRA)
Class Period: April 26, 2019 to May 7, 2020
Lead Plaintiff Deadline: August 17, 2020
On January 22, 2020, ProAssurance announced that because of a deteriorating loss experience related mainly to one large healthcare account underwritten in 2016, the Company was estimating a $37 million adverse development in its Specialty Property and Casualty (“Specialty P&C”) loss reserves for the fourth quarter of 2019. Additionally, the Company stated that since mid-2019 it had been executing a “comprehensive underwriting strategy in response to emerging trends and changing conditions in healthcare professional liability.”
In response to these disclosures, ProAssurance’s stock price fell $4.18 per share, or 11%, to close at $33.40 per share on January 23, 2020.
On February 20, 2020, ProAssurance announced its 2019 fourth quarter and full year results. The Company revealed that the adverse development from this one large national healthcare account was actually $51.5 million, much larger than the initial estimate of $37 million only a month prior. The Company discussed that “[i]n the span of twelve months, we restructured the majority of our executive team [and] consolidated our Specialty P&C operations” under new leadership.
Then, on May 8, 2020, ProAssurance announced that the large healthcare client would likely not renew its policy and instead would likely exercise an option for tail coverage that would result in an additional $50 million in losses in the second quarter of 2020. This loss, when combined with the $51.5 adverse development, meant that the Company would suffer over $100 million in losses from a single account.
In response to these disclosures, ProAssurance’s stock price fell $4.38 per share, or 22%, to close at $15.95 per share on May 8, 2020.
The complaint, filed on June 16, 2020, alleges that throughout the Class Period defendants misrepresented the Company’s underwriting and reserve standards, and failed to adequately reserve for losses. Specifically, defendants made false and/or misleading statements and/or failed to disclose that: (i) ProAssurance lacked adequate underwriting process and risk management controls necessary to set appropriate loss reserves in its Specialty P&C segment; (ii) ProAssurance failed to properly assess a large national healthcare account that experienced losses far exceeding the assumptions made when the account was underwritten; and (iii) as a result, ProAssurance was subject to materially heightened risk of financial loss and reserve charges.
For more information on the ProAssurance class action go to: https://bespc.com/PRA
About Bragar Eagel & Squire, P.C.:
Bragar Eagel & Squire, P.C. is a nationally recognized law firm with offices in New York and California. The firm represents individual and institutional investors in commercial, securities, derivative, and other complex litigation in state and federal courts across the country. For more information about the firm, please visit www.bespc.com. Attorney advertising. Prior results do not guarantee similar outcomes.
Bragar Eagel & Squire, P.C.
Melissa Fortunato, Esq.
Marion Passmore, Esq.
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