According to a press release dated December 05, 2008, the complaint alleges that during the Class Period, Farmer Mac represented that the company was reporting "strong" or "record" financial and operational results, and that Farmer Mac had already taken adequate measures to ensure that the Company would not face catastrophic losses related to un-hedged or risky investments --including a recent three year accounting restatement that was supposed to bring the Company into compliance with recent improvements in accounting for hedging and investment transactions and losses.
However, unknown to investors, at the time of the Company's representations, defendants were in possession of material undisclosed information that contradicted their public statements, including that: (a) defendants were inflating Farmer Mac's results through manipulations relating to the characterization of impairment costs and/or depreciation expenses which inflated the Company's reported cash flows, gross margins and Core and GAAP-earnings; (b) the Company's financial results were inflated by defendants' use of overly optimistic assumptions of asset valuations and investments, which were also reflected in defendants' misuse of mark-to-market accounting; (c) the Company's exposure to investment losses and credit problems of trading partners such as Lehman Bros. and Fannie Mae was much greater than represented; and (d) the Company was not on track to meet or exceed guidance sponsored or endorsed by defendants.
Investors only first learned the truth about Farmer Mac on September 12, 2008, when its shares closed at $16.56, from an open of $23.78, losing over 30% of their value in one day after the Company filed documents with the SEC saying it would incur significant charges due to its exposure to Fannie Mae securities. Further, shares of the Company continued to trade down thereafter to close to $2.00 per share following announcements concerning the resignation of its Chairman of the Board and losses related to debt issued by Lehman Brothers.
On February 23, 2009, the Court approved Edmond K. Jones, Maurice Prissert and Claude Prissert as lead plaintiffs and the selection of KGS and Susman Heffner & Hurst LLP to serve as Co-Lead Counsel for Lead Plaintiffs and the Class.
On February 25, 2010, a stipulation of Dismissal and Proposed Order was filed by one of the Co-Plaintiffs. The next day an order was granted outlining the agreement between Co-Plaintiffs, effectively dismissing the case without prejudice.