The Arkansas Teacher Retirement System is now the lead plaintiff in the class action securities fraud case against Babcock & Wilcox Enterprises. The energy company is accused of hiding significant losses. When Babcock & Wilcox finally disclosed that it was having problems, shareholders lost $300M after the stock price fell.
Prior to that disclosure, the company had admitted to losses involving just one plant that it was constructing in Europe. However, last February 28, the company disclosed that the losses had impacted other projects.
The class action securities case alleges misrepresentation and fraud. It names Babcock & Wilcox, CFO Jenny Apker, and CEO Jim Ferland as defendants. The plaintiffs are accusing them of involvement in a scam to fool the market while engaging in conduct to artificially raise the company’s share price through the concealment of issues in its waste-to-energy business. Business Journal reports that investors are referring to B & W’s eventual admission that up to seven of its projects in Europe had collectively suffered $140M in losses last year.