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Japan firms to recover 80% of losses in Princeton bond scandal.

TOKYO, Dec. 18 Kyodo

Japanese companies that lost hundreds of millions of dollars in the Princeton bond scandal will recover 80% on average of their losses under a deal announced Monday, a Japanese lawyer said Tuesday.

''The ratio of recovery is 80% on average (to the book value) and it is the highest in similar cases in the United States,'' said Masatake Yone, a lawyer for 24 of the 51 plaintiffs which settled civil lawsuits against a brokerage unit of British banking group HSBC Holdings plc.

HSBC USA Inc., a U.S. unit of HSBC Holdings, said Monday it has settled civil lawsuits brought by 51 of the 53 Japanese plaintiffs who have asserted claims against Republic New York Securities Corp. with a pledge to pay $680 million.

The restitution will be paid as early as by the year-end pending a U.S. federal court restitution order, Yone told a press conference.

The scandal revolved around a Ponzi scheme involving irredeemable bonds issued by Princeton Economics International Ltd. (PEI), a now-defunct securities firm based in New Jersey.

HSBC Holdings was a defendant in the suits because it bought the parent company of Republic New York Securities, which served as custodian of the so-called Princeton Funds.

Yone said $72 million of PEI's assets will be allotted to the Japanese companies involved in the process of its liquidation.
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Publication:Japan Weekly Monitor
Date:Dec 24, 2001
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