Biz Watch

MARTIN BUREAU/AFP

Will Arnault's suit open legal floodgates?

Muzzling Stock Analysts
Who will dare say anything bad about a French company again? That question is unnerving stock-market analysts following a one-two punch last week. The Paris Commercial Court fined Morgan Stanley €30 million for harm done to LVMH, Bernard Arnault's luxury-goods firm. LVMH argued that Morgan Stanley, which has worked for rival Gucci, issued biased reports against it. (The firm will appeal.) A day later, catering giant Sodexho called in French regulators after a Citigroup Smith Barney report sent its stock reeling.

Both LVMH and Sodexho said they were protecting themselves against...

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