Articles Tagged with oil and gas investments

Chicago-based Stoltmann Law Offices continues to represent investors who’ve suffered losses in connection with financial advisors who have oversold energy stocks and other energy-related investments. With the COVID-19 pandemic depressing demand for everything from gasoline to jet fuel, it’s been a mostly rotten year for energy stocks. In fact, when news first hit the markets in early March, stocks in many oil & gas companies and funds that invested in them crashed. At one time, the Energy Select SPDR (XLE), an exchange-traded fund that invests in energy companies, was down as much as 58%.

The net effect of tens of millions of Americans sheltering in place, avoiding travel and not commuting slashed demand for fuels. Only a handful of people were getting on jets, buses, ships, trains, or driving to work. That resulted in energy companies eliminating dividends and losing money.  While the economy has recovered somewhat as more states have re-opened in recent months, energy demand is nowhere near where it was at the beginning of 2020. The U.S. economy is now in a recession, which may continue into 2021.

What is important to realize about oil/gas prices is, the decline in energy demand actually began a few years ago – primary energy consumption dropped by half in 2019 alone — hasn’t stopped brokers from selling investments in oil & gas companies. They have sold stocks, limited partnerships, and mutual funds that concentrate in fossil fuels, which are volatile commodities and have a long history or volatility.

Chicago-based Stoltmann Law Offices has represented investors who’ve suffered losses from dealing with unscrupulous investment brokers selling exchange-traded products. Many of these high-risk products are unsuitable for retail investors.

With the COVID-19 crisis roiling financial markets, many investors have been sold products that rise when market indexes or individual securities fall. Many “exchange-linked products” (ETPs) often use borrowed money, or leverage, to magnify gains when the market drops, but they can also increase losses. They are generally only suitable for sophisticated investors and are linked to complex underlying futures contracts.

When the coronavirus crisis first made major headlines in the U.S. in early March, the stock, bond and commodities markets crashed. Since markets over-react to widespread greed and fear, traders went into mass selling mode over (later justified) expectations that demand for nearly everything from luxury goods to commodities would drop dramatically.

AdobeStock_82110313-1-300x125A class action lawsuit has been filed against Aegean Marine Petroleum (NYSE: ANW) on behalf of investors in the company in connection to alleged violations of securities laws. Stoltmann Law Offices is interested in hearing from those investors who may have lost money with ANW. According to the complaint, ANW may have provided false and/or misleading material information, and/or failed to disclose adverse material information to the public. As of December 31, 2017, the company inaccurately accounted for $200 million in accounts receivable, the company did not have proper internal controls to govern its financial reporting, and the company’s statements to the public during the time period were false and misleading. On June 5th, 2018, the company stated that “approximately $200 million of accounts receivable owed the company will need to be written off,” and that it could not determine “the full impact on the financial statements or how this adjustment will be recorded…there could be other adjustments that result from the Audit Committee’s review that could impact the financial statements.”
According to ANW’s website, it is a “marine fuel Logistics Company that physically supplies and markets refined marine fuels and lubricants to ships in port and at sea.” It is the largest independent physical supplier that buys fuel from refiners, oil producers and other sources, which it then resells and delivers using its own double-hull fleet.

AdobeStock_78306447-1-300x199Did you suffer losses with Payson Petroleum? If so, the attorneys of Stoltmann Law Offices are interested in speaking with you. Payson Petroleum is an oil and gas company based out of Bartonville, Texas. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) accused Matthew Carl Griffin and William Daniel Griffin, the former heads of the company, of making numerous misrepresentations to investors in connection with Payson’s 3 Well Program. The Griffins agreed to a permanent obey-the-law injunction, disgorgement with prejudgment interest and a civil penalty in amounts that will be determined by the court. The scheme was conducted between November 2013 and July 2014, when the Griffin brothers raised $23 million from 150 investors. The Griffins told investors that Payson would contribute 20 percent of the offering amount to cover 20 percent of the cost of the wells and that it would cover any cost overages beyond the estimated $24 million cost. In reality, Payson contributed no money to the offering or well costs and lacked the financial means to pay any overages. During this time, the Griffins knew the project lacked the funds and they misrepresented that they had raised the $27 million they told investors about.

Oil and gas investments are particularly risky and illiquid investments. They are not suitable for many investors. If you suffered losses with the Payson Petroleum fund, please call our Chicago-based law offices today at 312-332-4200. We may be able to help you recover those losses by bringing a claim against the company in the arbitration forum on a contingency fee basis. The call is free with no obligation. Please call today as there is a statute of limitations on many of these cases.

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