July 12, 2012

THE FRANKOWSKI FIRM INVESTIGATE DUKE ENERGY CORPORATION

The Frankowski Firm, LLC announces the commencement of an investigation into Duke Energy Corporation, ("Duke" or the "Company") to determine whether it has violated securities laws by issuing false and misleading statements to its shareholders in light of recent disclosures made about the Company's $32 billion merger with Progress Energy.

On July 2, 2012, Duke closed it $32 billion merger with Progress Energy.  Shortly after the merger closed, Duke fired its CEO, prompting a former Progress Energy director to announce that the Progress Energy board of directors had been mislead prior to the merger.  The North Carolina Utilities Commission has also announced that it was revisiting whether it was mislead as to the terms of the merger.  When the true nature of the merger was revealed to investors, the share price of Duke's stock dropped significantly on high trading volume.  We are investigating whether the Company issued false and misleading statements to the investing public in connection with the merger.

What You Can Do

If you are a Duke shareholder, you may have legal claims under the securities laws.  If you wish to discuss this investigation, or have questions about this notice or your legal rights, please contact attorney Richard Frankowski via toll-free telephone at 888-390-0036.  There is no cost to you.

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July 10, 2012

FUTURES BROKERAGE FIRM MISSING $200 MILLION

A day after the chairman and CEO of Peregrine Financial Group attempted to commit suicide outside of their office, the Commodities Futures Trading Commission filed a request in Federal Court to have the company's assets frozen, according to a New York Times article. The CFTC also requested a restraining order against Peregrine Financial Group, keeping them from destroying any pertinent information or documents.

The article reported that Peregrine Financial Group was to be holding $225 million dollars of customer funds. However, Peregrine only had $5 million of the customers' money. It is unknown at this time how the money was diverted or where the money is being kept. It is believed that the US Bank documents that showed the monies location were fraudulent.

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July 10, 2012

JPMORGAN FAVORING OWN FUNDS OVER INVESTORS' NEEDS

Brokers at JPMorgan were encouraged to sell customers JPMorgan's own funds, even if there were more suitable or cheaper options for the customers, a Dealbook.com article reported. This is not the first time there has been issue with the company favoring its own funds. JPMorgan was ordered to pay $373 million for favoring its own funds in a 2011 arbitration, the article revealed. The Chase Strategic Portfolio is one of the funds at issue. According to the article, investors may not have "a clear sense" of what they are buying when they are being put into JPMorgan created funds.

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July 9, 2012

ASSETS OF MISSING GEORGIA INVESTOR FROZEN BY SEC

The assets of Aubrey Lee Price, the missing Georgia investor charged with a $40 million dollar investment fraud scheme, have been frozen according to an SEC press release. Mr. Price was allegedly selling an unregistered investment fund PFG that he managed without telling investors that it was tied up in illiquid investments and South American real estate. The press release  stated that Price admitted to using fraudulent methods to cover with investors. According to the quote from Price's letter in the SEC press release, he "falsified statements with false returns" in order to conceal between $20 million and $23 million in investor losses. Aubrey Lee Price's whereabouts are currently unknown.

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July 9, 2012

AGENCIES ON BOTH SIDES OF THE ATLANTIC INVESTIGATE BANK SCANDALS

In the aftermath of the Barclays scandal, United States and British Lawmakers are cracking down on regulators that should have been more proactive and dedicated in preventing the years of illegal banking behaviors. The Dealbook.com article said that the Barclays $450 million settlement is but the first action from this broad and far-reaching investigation.

The article lists some of the many players in this cross-Atlantic investigation. They are including the House Financial Services Committee, the Senate Banking Committee, the Commodities Futures Trading Commission, the Justice Department and the New York Fed, to name a few of the American organizations. In the UK, the Parliamentary Committee as well as the Financial Services Authority of Britain are very active in the investigation.

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July 9, 2012

$20.5 MILLION AWARD AGAINST GOLDMAN SACHS UPHELD

Goldman Sachs has been trying to overturn the $20.5 million arbitration award arising from the 2005 collapse of the hedge fund manager Bayou Group. The NY Times Dealbook article explains that the now defunct Bayou Group accused Goldman Sachs of helping to perpetrate a Ponzi scheme. The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upheld the award to the creditors of Bayou last Tuesday, according to the article. The Bayou Group's former chief executive is serving a 20 year sentence for his role in the fraud. He pleaded guilty to misrepresenting the value of Bayou's funds and defrauding clients of more than $400 million.

If this large arbitration award is upheld, it may have broader ramifications on Wall Street. The article stated that Goldman Sachs and firms similar to Goldman Sachs, who clear billions of dollars in trades a year and have long-held that their job is simply to clear those transactions, have held that they did not have a duty to police the clients.  This arbitration award and its symbolism to other Wall Street establishments has caused some experts to argue that the award could force a higher duty on Wall Street.

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July 9, 2012

FERC PROBES JPMORGAN AMIDST ALLEGATIONS OF MARKET MANIPULATION

Yet another agency is looking into the dealings of JPMorgan. The United States Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) is probing into the extremely high derivative losses of JPMorgan, according to this Bloomberg Businessweek article. The FERC formed a Division of Analytics last February, employing around 45 people, dedicated to watching, analyzing and policing the natural gas and energy markets. So far, the Division of Analytics has come to a $245 million settlement with Constellation Energy Group, Inc. and is currently performing 11 probes, according to the article.

Allegedly, JPMorgan made market bids that resulted in at least $73 million being improperly paid to generators. The FERC is currently seeking internal correspondence from JPMorgan while the company is fighting the request in court. The FERC sued JPMorgan on July 2, 2012. The article reported that this investigation was launched into JPMorgan's market actions after a power grid operator reported unusual trading offers.

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July 7, 2012

SEC SUES HEDGE FUND MANAGER

The Los Angeles Times reported that Philip Falcone and his firm, Harbinger Capital Partners, are facing charges of civil fraud and bond price manipulation. The article stated that Falcone and his firm allegedly manipulated the market for high yield and high risk bonds. Falcone used Maxx Holdings to buy up a great portion of Harbinger Funds to shrink the availability in the market and drive up prices.

Falcone and his firm were also accused of letting only certain investors know when they should cash out their holdings, without giving any warning to their other investors. Three other firms were linked to the fraud and bond manipulation and paid $1 million dollar fines.

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July 5, 2012

BEAR STEARNS $275 MILLION SETTLEMENT REACHED

Bear Stearns has been ordered to pay $275 Million dollars to investors that lost money with Bear Stearns.  According to a recent CNBC.com article, Bear Stearns misled their investors about the true and deteriorating state of the company before JP Morgan purchased Bear Stearns.

Bear Stearns was one of the first prominent companies to fail after the housing bubble burst. The settlement discussed in the article comes after a failed criminal trial against two higher up Bear Stearns executives.

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July 3, 2012

THE FRANKOWSKI FIRM INVESTIGATES EATON

the Frankowski Firm LLC announces the commencement of an investigation into Eaton Corporation ("Eaton" or the "Company") (NYSE: ETN) to determine whether it has violated securities laws by issuing false and misleading statements to its shareholders in light of the disclosures made about the Company's wrongful course of conduct undertaken during a high stakes trade secrets lawsuit in Mississippi state court.

In 2011, a Mississippi state court judge found that Eaton and its executives were aware of, and sanctioned, an illegal scheme to improperly influence the judicial process.  On May 31, 2012, Eaton executives and attorneys submitted affidavits to a Mississippi state court admitting that damaging emails and documents related to this scheme had been improperly withheld from the other party to the lawsuit.  In reaction to this news, shares of Eaton fell significantly on high trading volume.  We are investigating whether the Company issued false and misleading statements to the investing public when news of the improper scheme first came to light.

What You Can Do

If you are an Eaton shareholder, you may have legal claims under the securities laws.  If you wish to discuss this investigation, or have questions about this notice or your legal rights, please contact attorney Richard Frankowski via toll-free telephone at 888-390-0036.  There is no cost to you.

The Frankowski Firm LLC

The Frankowski Firm, LLC, is a Birmingham, Alabama law firm that among other things dedicates its practice to the representation of shareholders and investors in litigation, including shareholder class actions, derivative litigation and FINRA arbitrations. More information about the firm is available through its website, www.bhflegal.com and upon request from the firm. The Frankowski Firm, LLC has paid for the dissemination of this promotional communication, and is responsible for its content.

No representation is made that the quality of legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services to be performed by other lawyers

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July 3, 2012

SEC ADOPTS NEW FINRA COMMUNICATION RULE

The SEC has adopted the FINRA communication rule, which has some noticeable changes from the previous NASD rule, according to the article on Mondaq.com. One noticeable change was the consolidation of the six communication categories into three- institutional communication, retail communication and correspondence. The article further illuminated the difference between retail and institutional correspondence, per FINRA and The SEC.

There are also many other requirements set forth by FINRA and the SEC putting forth standards for retail and institutional communication as well as review procedures for such communication. The article also states that a "public appearance" is no longer a separate category and will fall under the new guidelines and requirements of the communication rule.

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June 27, 2012

SEC EXPLAINS BOND FUNDS AND INCOME FUNDS

"Bond funds" and "income funds" are terms used to describe a type of investment company (mutual fund, closed-end fund or unit investment trust (UIT)) that invest primarily in bonds or other types of debt securities. Depending on its investment objectives and policies, a bond fund may concentrate its investments in a particular type of bond or debt security--such as government bonds, municipal bonds, corporate bonds, convertible bonds, mortgage-backed securities, zero-coupon bonds--or a mixture of types. The securities that bond funds hold will vary in terms of risk, return, duration, volatility and other features.

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June 27, 2012

MORGAN KEEGAN TO PAY OVER $630,000 AFTER DEPT. OF LABOR FINDS PENSION RULE VIOLATION

Morgan Keegan agreed to pay over $630,000 to 10 ERISA pension plans after an investigation by the US Department of Labor, according to the Department's press release.  The investigation found that Morgan Keegan violated federal law when it recommended certain hedge funds to the pension plans.

The press release went on to state that Morgan Keegan will now disclose to all of the ERISA plans it works with if indeed Morgan Keegan is acting as a fiduciary to them and what exactly that role entails. Morgan Keegan also must disclose all fees it has collected in conjunction with the pension plans and refund any third party fees collected to the pension plans.

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June 26, 2012

11TH CIRCUIT REINSTATES SEC'S AUCTION RATE ACTION AGAINST MORGAN KEEGAN

The Eleventh Circuit reinstated an SEC enforcement action against Morgan Keegan & Co., holding that the Northern District of Georgia erred in granting summary judgment.  In SEC v. Morgan Keegan & Co., 2012 WL 1520895, the SEC alleged that the Morgan Keegan's brokers had misrepresented auction rate securities as cash alternatives and did not disclose that ARS carried liquidity risk, according to this article.

The Eleventh Circuit held that the brokers' alleged misstatements can be included in the materiality inquiry. The article also stated that The Eleventh Circuit said the number of investors effected was not determinative; if the brokers' statement reached thousands or only four people, as in this case, their statements can still held to be materially misrepresentative.

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June 26, 2012

FINRA'S NEW RULES REQUIRE BROKER CHANGES AND NEW STRATEGIES

A recent Reuters.com article explains the complex details of the new two FINRA rules coming into effect on July 2, 2012. FINRA's Know Your Customer Rule and Suitability Rule require firms to use due diligence when dealing with customers. According to the article, the new rules will also now require customers to provide detailed information about their investment needs and themselves.

The Know Your Customer Rule requires diligence on the part of brokers to have all the documents necessary to fully understand the wants and needs of their customers. It also places a responsibility on the customer to provide such documents. The Suitability Rule demands a level of diligence on both parties and requires a customer to provide what is necessary for a broker to decide what is suitable.  The Rule requires brokers to base all recommendations off a complete customer investment profile. FINRA also establishes three factors for consideration when determining if a communication is a recommendation and thus would fall under this rule.

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