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You may have lost money in your investment portfolio,
due to mismanagement and not even know it.

Hard-fought and long-tenured securities class action case settles

The underlying claim settled many years back.

The result was quite dissimilar for a related class-action lawsuit, which lived on.

Boy, did it ever.

In fact, a massive claim against Halliburton, a global conglomerate that is one of the world's largest oilfield services firms, had pitted the company against irate investors for approximately a decade and a half before it summarily -- and somewhat unexpectedly -- settled last month.

It was Halliburton who apparently blinked, with the Texas-based industry giant agreeing to the terms related to a securities fraud class action lawsuit.

Litigation had been pending since 2002, when investors who felt they had been defrauded by several company actions went to federal court to address their concerns.

A core complaint levied by the certified class of litigants stated that Halliburton -- which was headed at the time of the company's alleged unlawful activity by ex-U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney -- purposefully misstated its liability and legal exposure in asbestos litigation, which drove the value of investors' securities holdings down.

Claimants additionally contended that their held securities lost value as a result of Halliburton fraudulently overstating project-related revenues and overly hyping the benefits of a merger deal.

The case had twice reached the U.S. Supreme Court before it ultimately settled, with the plaintiffs seemingly facing an uphill battle owing to restrictions imposed upon them by the nation's highest court.

Halliburton has agreed in principle to abide by the material terms of the settlement pact, which centrally include a company payout of $100 million to defrauded investors. The settlement will not be deemed final until it is judicially approved.

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