Apache is an independent energy company that explores for, develops, and produces natural gas, crude oil, and natural gas liquids. Within the United States, Apache’s purported “core growth area” was an oil and gas field known as “Alpine High” located along the western edge of the Permian Basin in West Texas. By January 2016, Apache had purchased over 300,000 acres in the Permian Basin, including as part of the highly touted Alpine High project.
As alleged in the Class Action Complaint, throughout the Class Period, Defendants made materially false and misleading statements regarding Apache’s operations and financial health, including the viability and profitability of Alpine High. Specifically, Defendants issued materially false and/or misleading statements and failed to disclose that: (i) Apache intentionally used unrealistic assumptions regarding the amount and composition of available gas and oil in Alpine High; (ii) Apache did not have the proper infrastructure in place to safely and/or economically drill and/or transport those resources even if they did in fact exist in the amounts purported; (iii) the foregoing misleading statements and omissions served to artificially inflate the value of the Company’s operations in the Permian Basin and Alpine High specifically; and (iv) as a result, the Company’s public statements were materially false and misleading at all relevant times. The truth emerged through a series of disclosures that caused Apache’s stock price to fall and investors to suffer substantial losses.