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1622 Locust Street Philadelphia, PA 19103

The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. 

What should you do if you believe you have may have held a short call position?

Background on the Manipulative Options Trading Class Action

Class Action Lawsuit
Manipulative Options Trading

A full-spectrum class action and civil litigation law firm.

If you believe you have held a short call position, contact Lawrence Deutsch, Esq. of Berger & Montague, P.C., at 215.875.3062 or by e-mail at

All of your information will be kept strictly confidential.

There is no charge or obligation for our review of your short call complaint.

About the Manipulative Options Trading Lawsuit

The lawsuit alleges widespread manipulation of call options on the Philadelphia exchange by market makers and brokers on dividend paying stocks and exchanged traded funds over several years.  A market maker is a broker-dealer, who enjoys certain margin and trading privileges because of their status, that accepts the risk of holding a certain number of shares of a particular security in order to facilitate trading in that security. It is alleged that the market makers used these privileges to unfairly manipulate certain options trades. The case is brought on behalf of writers of call options for dividend paying stocks and EFTs that were damaged by the scheme.

Berger & Montague, P.C. has filed a class action in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on behalf of all persons who held short call option positions on “in the money” call options contracts on dividend paying stocks and exchange traded funds (“ETFs”) and who were adversely affected by Defendants’ manipulation of the options markets prior to the ex-dividend date on such securities from February 6, 2010 through the present (the “Class Period”).

The Complaint alleges that beginning in February 2010, Market Maker Defendants manipulated call options in advance of dividend payments on underlying securities to the detriment of all other holders of short call positions in those options contracts.  Specifically, the Market Maker Defendants, with the acquiescence of Defendants NASDAQ/PHLX and NASDAQ OMX, manipulated the options contracts by executing among themselves huge pre-arranged matched options trades on underlying securities immediately prior to the date for that security's dividend payment.

These market makers flooded the options market with additional option contracts one day before the ex-dividend date.  By greatly inflating the size of the open interest pool for the call options, the Market Maker Defendants, with the acquiescence of NASDAQ/PHLX and NASDQ OMX, increased their own chances of non-assignment of the options, thus increasing their chances to collect the dividend on those unassigned options.  Market Maker Defendants thereby improperly diverted the dividends that would have been paid to plaintiff and other members of the class, resulting in damages to the class.

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