Class action suit commenced against CIBC



    Investors seek billions in compensation, citing misrepresentations and
    negligence in relation to CIBC's U.S. subprime investments

    TORONTO, July 23 /CNW/ - Investors who purchased common shares of the
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce ("CIBC") between May 31, 2007 and February
28, 2008 have launched a multi billion dollar class action suit against CIBC
and several former and current officers and directors.
    The claim, issued with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, alleges
that the defendants engaged in a series of misrepresentations during the class
period concerning the extent of CIBC's total exposure to investments in the
failing U.S. subprime residential mortgages market ("USSRMM"). Specifically,
it is alleged that CIBC misrepresented the magnitude and level of risk
associated with its U.S. subprime residential mortgage investments. In
particular, CIBC represented during the class period that its total exposure
in USSRMM investments, including both hedged and unhedged investments, was
"not a major issue" when, in fact, the bank had exposure to billions of
dollars of losses, as was only subsequently disclosed.
    Further, CIBC failed to disclose that one of its principal hedge
counterparties, ACA Financial, was woefully undercapitalized with an asset to
guarantee ratio of "1-180" and was far from able to provide any meaningful
hedge protection to the bank's USSRMM investments.
    It is alleged that these misrepresentations, among others, had the effect
of substantially artificially inflating the price of CIBC common shares
through the class period. Indeed, when CIBC provided more complete disclosure,
through a series of partial disclosures regarding its USSRMM investments in
late 2007 and early 2008, CIBC common shares fell dramatically. In its Q1 2008
financials, CIBC disclosed write downs of $3.487 billion, $3.379 billion of
which were related to the bank's USSRMM investments. These disclosures
contradicted the company's earlier representations and disclosures during the
class period.
    The allegations raised in the claim have not yet been proven in court.
The plaintiff and the prospective class members are represented by the firm of
Rochon Genova LLP. Joel Rochon, counsel for the class, stated:
    "This claim alleges that a major Canadian issuer apparently ignored its
legally required disclosure obligations to the detriment of the investing
public. It is alleged in the claim that CIBC, over a period of months,
repeatedly misled the market and investors as to the size of the bank's
exposure to the U.S. subprime market, and also to the volatility of its
related investments." Mr. Rochon added: "Investors appear to have lost
billions due to the bank's misrepresentations and its failure to manage
investments prudently".




For further information:

For further information: Rochon Genova LLP, Joel Rochon, (416) 363-1867,
www.rochongenova.com


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