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Shareholder class action filings are on track to increase this year, according to two recent studies. The PricewaterhouseCoopers Securities Litigation Mid-Year Update counted 57 cases in the first half of 2007, compared with 106 for all of 2006. Despite the upward trend, PricewaterhouseCoopers International Ltd. expects 2007 case filings will likely fall below the 10-year average of 187. The accounting giant attributes the drop in cases to Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, increased regulatory oversight and a stable stock market. “The economy, the regulatory environment and corporate and public attitudes can influence and shape the shift in the cases,” said PricewaterhouseCoopers partner Grace Lamont. In a study released last week, NERA Economic Consulting concluded that shareholder class actions are on pace to climb above 2006 totals. NERA noted that 76 cases were filed during first half of 2007, compared with 136 last year.

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