Skip to Main Content

Jennifer L. Joost

Partner

D   415.400.3009

Jennifer L. Joost, a partner in the Firm’s San Francisco office, has devoted her practice to representing plaintiffs in large-scale complex class actions. Ms. Joost has represented individual and institutional investors in a variety of securities class actions including some of the largest class actions to arise out of the most recent financial crisis. Ms. Joost received her law degree, cum laude, from Temple University Beasley School of Law, where she was the Special Projects Editor for the Temple International and Comparative Law Journal. Ms. Joost earned her undergraduate degree (B.A.) in History with honors from Washington University in St. Louis. She is licensed to practice in Pennsylvania and California.

Ms. Joost was part of the team who litigated In re Bank of America Corp. Securities, Derivative, and Employee Retirement Security Act (ERISA) Litigation, No. 09 MDL 2058 (S.D.N.Y.), which settled on the eve of trial for $2.425 billion and In re Citigroup, Inc. Bond Litig., No. 08 Civ. 9522 (SHS) (S.D.N.Y.), which settled for $730 million. Ms. Joost also was part of the team that litigated Luther, et al. v. Countrywide Financial Corp., No. BC 380698, which settled for $500 million in 2013. Ms. Joost likewise was part of the team that successfully litigated claims on behalf of a class of investors in In re Ocwen Financial Corp. Sec. Litig., No. 14-cv-81057-WPD in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida. The case ultimately settled for $56 million on the eve of trial. Most recently, Ms. Joost was part of a team that successfully litigated claims in the United States District Court for the Central District of California on behalf of a class of investors in In re Snap Inc. Sec. Litig., No. 17-cv-03679-SVW-AGR. The case settled in January 2020 for $154 million two months before trial. Ms. Joost has led discovery in or otherwise been involved in all aspects of pre-trial proceedings for more than 20 settled or pending actions, including: In re JPMorgan Chase & Co. Sec. Litig., No. 12-cv-03852-GBD (S.D.N.Y.) ($150 million recovery); Minneapolis Firefighters’ Relief Association v. Medtronic, Inc., No. 08-cv-06324-PAM-AJB (D. Minn) ($85 million recovery); In re MGM Mirage Sec. Litig., No. 2:09-cv-01558-GMN-VCF (D. Nevada) ($75 million recovery); and In re Weatherford Int’l Sec. Litig., No. 11 Civ. 1646 (LAK) (S.D.N.Y.) ($52.5 million recovery).

Memberships

  • Member, AAJ
  • Member of AAJ Legal Affairs Committee

Awards/Rankings

  • Super Lawyers -- Rising Star, PA: 2010-2011
  • Super Lawyers -- Rising Star, Northern CA: 2013-2014, 2016-2021
  • LawDragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Financial Lawyers: 2019-2021
Experience

Current Cases

  • CASE CAPTION             Courter, et al. v. CytoDyn, Inc., et al.
    COURT United States District Court for the Western District of Washington
    CASE NUMBER C21-5190 BHS
    JUDGE Honorable Benjamin H. Settle
    PLAINTIFF Court-appointed Lead Plaintiff Brian Joe Courter and Courter and Sons LLC, and Additional Plaintiffs Diane M. Hooper, Thomas McGee and Candra E. Evans
    DEFENDANTS CytoDyn, Inc. Nader Z. Pourhassan, Michael Mulholland, and Scott A. Kelly
    CLASS PERIOD March 27, 2020 and May 17, 2021, inclusive 

    This securities fraud class action arises out of Defendants’ public conduct and misrepresentations concerning CytoDyn’s only prospective drug, leronlimab, during 2020-2021.  Defendants’ fraudulent misconduct came in several forms:  materially false and misleading statements concerning CytoDyn’s application to the United States Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) for the use of leronlimab to treat HIV; material misstatements concerning purported data and information showing leronlimab’s safety and efficacy as a treatment for COVID-19; and Defendants’ scheme to directly and indirectly promote leronlimab’s promise as a COVID-19 treatment and thus pump up CytoDyn’s common stock price, after which Defendants “dumped,” or rapidly sold, millions of dollars’ worth of their personally-held shares at inflated prices.

    Adverse facts known to Defendants, but concealed from investors throughout the Class Period, showed that CytoDyn’s data regarding leronlimab was nowhere near sufficient to support an application for regulatory approval of the drug for HIV indications, nor to support claims that leronlimab was efficacious in treating any type of COVID-19 patient.  Indeed, at the end of the Class Period and afterwards, Defendants received communications from the FDA and/or the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) indicating that Defendants’ public representations touting leronlimab and its potential FDA approval and COVID-19 application were not supported by data and accepted analyses.  The truth regarding Defendants’ misrepresentations came onto the market in a set of disclosures in 2020 and 2021 that led to sharp declines in CytoDyn’s stock price, causing significant losses and damages to the Company’s investors.  On July 30, 2021, CytoDyn disclosed that it was being investigated by both the SEC and the United States Department of Justice.

    Plaintiffs successfully moved to modify the automatic discovery stay under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, and received documents from Defendants starting in early 2022, before any motion to dismiss was adjudicated.  On June 24, 2022, Plaintiffs filed a 228-page amended complaint, under seal, on behalf of a putative class of investors against CytoDyn and its executives, including CEO Nader Pourhassan, CFO Michael Mulholland, and CMO Scott A. Kelly.  Plaintiffs claim Defendants violated Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act by making false and misleading statements and concealing material facts about CytoDyn’s data and regulatory actions and prospects concerning the investigational drug leronlimab, and engaging in a fraudulent promotional scheme regarding the same.  Plaintiffs also claim Defendants Pourhassan, Mulholland and Kelly are liable as control persons of CytoDyn under Section 20(a) of the Exchange Act, and that they violated Section 20A of the Exchange Act by selling personally held shares of CytoDyn common stock while aware of material nonpublic information concerning leronlimab.  In August, Defendants moved to dismiss the amended complaint. The parties are currently engaged in briefing on that motion.

    Read Amended Class Action Complaint Here

    Read Second Amended Class Action Complaint Here 

    View the Press Releases Chart

  • CASE CAPTION            In re re Kraft Heinz Securities Litigation
    COURT United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
    CASE NUMBER 1:19-cv-01339
    JUDGE Honorable Robert M. Dow, Jr.
    PLAINTIFF Union Asset Management Holding AG, Sjunde Ap-Fonden, and Booker Enterprises Pty Ltd.
    DEFENDANTS The Kraft Heinz Company (“Kraft” or the “Company”), 3G Capital Partners, 3G Capital, Inc., 3G Global Food Holdings, L.P., 3G Global Food Holdings GP LP, 3G Capital Partners LP, 3G Capital Partners II LP, 3G Capital Partners Ltd., Bernardo Hees, Paulo Basilio, David Knopf, Alexandre Behring, George Zoghbi, and Rafael Oliveira
    CLASS PERIOD November 5, 2015 through August 7, 2019, inclusive

    This securities fraud class action case arises out Defendants’ misstatements regarding the Company’s financial position, including the carrying value of Kraft Heinz’s assets, the sustainability of the Company’s margins, and the success of recent cost-cutting strategies by Kraft Heinz.

    Kraft Heinz is one of the world’s largest food and beverage manufacturer and produces well-known brands including Kraft, Heinz, Oscar Mayer, Jell-O, Maxwell House, and Velveeta. The Company was formed as the result of the 2015 merger between Kraft Foods Group, Inc. and H.J. Heinz Holding Corporation. That merger was orchestrated by the private equity firm 3G Capital (“3G”) and Berkshire Hathaway with the intention of wringing out excess costs from the legacy companies. 3G is particularly well-known for its strategy of buying mature companies with relatively slower growth and then cutting costs using “zero-based budgeting,” in which the budget for every expenditure begins at $0 with increases being justified during every period.

    Plaintiffs allege that Kraft misrepresented the carrying value of its assets, sustainability of its margins, and the success of the Company’s cost-cutting strategy in the wake of the 2015 merger. During the time that Kraft was making these misrepresentations and artificially inflating its stock price, Kraft’s private equity sponsor, 3G Capital, sold $1.2 billion worth of Kraft stock.

    On February 21, 2019, Kraft announced that it was forced to take a goodwill charge of $15.4 billion to write-down the value of the Kraft and Oscar Mayer brands—one of the largest goodwill impairment charges taken by any company since the financial crisis. In connection with the charge, Kraft also announced that it would cut its dividend by 36% and incur a $12.6 billion loss for the fourth quarter of 2018. That loss was driven not only by Kraft’s write-down, but also by plunging margins and lower pricing throughout Kraft’s core business. In response, analysts immediately criticized the Company for concealing and “push[ing] forward” the “bad news” and characterized the Company’s industry-leading margins as a “façade.”

    Heightening investor concerns, Kraft also revealed that it received a subpoena from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in the same quarter it determined to take this write-down and was conducting an internal investigation relating to the Company’s side-agreements with vendors in its procurement division. Because of this subpoena and internal investigation, Kraft was also forced to take a separate $25 million charge relating to its accounting practices. Plaintiffs allege that because of the Company’s misrepresentations, the price of Kraft’s shares traded at artificially-inflated levels during the Class Period.

    On August 11, 2021, The Honorable Robert M. Dow, Jr. sustained Plaintiffs’ complaint. The case is now in discovery.  In March 2022, Plaintiffs moved for class certification.  

    Read Consolidated Amended Class Action Complaint Here

    Read Opinion and Order Denying Motion to Dismiss Here

    Read Motion for Class Certification Here

  • CASE CAPTION  Charles Larry Crews, Jr., et al. v. Rivian Automotive Inc., et al.
    COURT United States District Court for the Central District of California Western Division
    CASE NUMBER 2:22-cv-0524
    JUDGE Honorable R. Gary Klausner
    PLAINTIFF Sjunde AP-Fonden, James Stephen Muhl
    DEFENDANTS Rivian Automotive, Inc. (“Rivian” or the “Company”), Robert J. Scaringe, Claire McDonough, Jeffrey R. Baker, Karen Boone, Sanford Schwartz, Rose Marcario, Peter Krawiec, Jay Flatley, Pamela Thomas-Graham, Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, Goldman Sachs & Co., LLC, J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, Barclays Capital Inc., Deutsche Bank Securities Inc., Allen & Company LLC, BofA Securities, Inc., Mizuho Securities USA LLC, Wells Fargo Securities, LLC, Nomura Securities International, Inc., Piper Sandler & Co., RBC Capital Markets, LLC, Robert W. Baird & Co. Inc., Wedbush Securities Inc., Academy Securities, Inc., Blaylock Van, LLC, Cabrera Capital Markets LLC, C.L. King & Associates, Inc., Loop Capital Markets LLC, Samuel A. Ramirez & Co., Inc., Siebert Williams Shank & Co., LLC, and Tigress Financial Partners LLC.
    CLASS PERIOD November 10, 2021 through March 10, 2022, inclusive

    This securities fraud class action case arises out of Defendants’ representations and omissions made in connection with Rivian’s highly-anticipated initial public offering (“IPO”) on November 10, 2021. Specifically, the Company’s IPO offering documents failed to disclose material facts and risks to investors arising from the true cost of manufacturing the Company’s electric vehicles, the R1T and R1S, and the planned price increase that was necessary to ensure the Company’s long-term profitability. During the Class Period, Plaintiffs allege that certain defendants continued to mislead the market concerning the need for and timing of a price increase for the R1 vehicles. The truth concerning the state of affairs within the Company was gradually revealed to the public, first on March 1, 2022 through a significant price increase—and subsequent retraction on March 3, 2022—for existing and future preorders. And then on March 10, 2022, the full extent Rivian’s long-term financial prospects was disclosed in connection with its Fiscal Year 2022 guidance. As alleged, following these revelations, Rivian’s stock price fell precipitously, causing significant losses and damages to the Company’s investors.

    On July 22, 2022, Plaintiffs filed a Consolidated Class Action Complaint on behalf of a putative class of investors alleging that Rivian, and its CEO Robert J. Scaringe (“Scaringe”), CFO Claire McDonough (“McDonough”), and CAO Jeffrey R. Baker (“Baker”) violated Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act. Plaintiffs also allege violations of Section 11, Section 12(a)(2), and Section 15 of the Securities Act against Rivian, Scaringe, McDonough, Baker, Rivian Director Karen Boone, Rivian Director Sanford Schwartz, Rivian Director Rose Marcario, Rivian Director Peter Krawiec, Rivian Director Jay Flatley, Rivian Director Pamela Thomas-Graham, and the Rivian IPO Underwriters. On August 29, 2022, Defendants filed motions to dismiss. The parties are currently engaged in briefing on those motions.

    Read Consolidated Class Action Complaint Here

Landmark Results

  • We represented the Miami Beach Employees’ Retirement Plan, the Philadelphia Public Employees’ Retirement System, the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority Pension Fund, and the City of Tallahassee Pension Plan in this historic class action against Citigroup before Judge Sidney H. Stein of the Southern District of New York.  Plaintiffs and a class of Citigroup bondholders alleged that Citigroup concealed its exposure to subprime mortgage debt on the eve of the 2008 financial crisis—exposure that, once revealed, led to massive investment losses.  The $730 million settlement is believed to be the second largest recovery ever for a Section 11 claim under the Securities Act on behalf of corporate bondholders.  

  • As co-lead counsel representing the Maine Public Employees’ Retirement System, secured a $500 million settlement for a class of plaintiffs that purchased mortgage-backed securities (MBS) issued by Countrywide Financial Corporation (Countrywide).

    Plaintiffs alleged that Countrywide and various of its subsidiaries, officers and investment banks made false and misleading statements in more than 450 prospectus supplements relating to the issuance of subprime and Alt-A MBS—in particular, the quality of the underlying loans. When information about the loans became public, the plaintiffs’ investments declined in value. The ensuing six-year litigation raised several issues of first impression in the Ninth Circuit.

  • This securities fraud class action in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York stemmed from the “London Whale” derivatives trading scandal at JPMorgan Chase. Shareholders alleged that JPMorgan concealed the high-risk, proprietary trading activities of the investment bank’s Chief Investment Office, including the highly volatile, synthetic credit portfolio linked to trader Bruno Iksil—a.k.a., the “London Whale”—which caused a $6.2 billion loss in a matter of weeks. Shareholders accused JPMorgan of falsely downplaying media reports of the synthetic portfolio, including on an April 2012 conference call when JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon dismissed these reports as a “tempest in a teapot,” when in fact, the portfolio’s losses were swelling as a result of the bank’s failed oversight.

    This case was resolved in 2015 for $150 million, following U.S. District Judge George B. Daniels’ order certifying the class, representing a significant victory for investors.