MELBOURNE, May 9 (Reuters) - Global law firm Quinn Emanuel filed a lawsuit against Australian wealth manager AMP Ltd on Wednesday, a day before the company’s annual general meeting, complaining of allegations of criminal misconduct that have sent AMP shares tumbling.
Quinn Emanuel said it filed the class action on behalf of shareholders who have seen AMP’s market capitalisation plunge by around A$2 billion ($1.49 billion) following admissions AMP executives made during a government-ordered inquiry into misconduct in Australia’s banking sector.
“The class action alleges that, amongst other things, AMP breached its continuous disclosure obligations and made misleading statements, causing shareholders significant loss,” the law firm, whose full name is Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP, said in a statement.
AMP had no immediate comment.
The class action, filed at the supreme court of New South Wales, is the first against AMP and is backed by global litigation funders Burford Capital.
Three directors quit AMP on Tuesday following the departure of AMP’s chairman, chief executive and in-house lawyer, after revelations at the inquiry that the once-venerable firm had lied to regulators and allegedly doctored an independent report.
Shares in AMP closed at A$4.08 on Wednesday, giving the firm a market value of A$11.91 billion.
($1 = 1.3434 Australian dollars)
Reporting by Melanie Burton