WASHINGTON -- Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will pay $40 million for misleading investors about its monthly sales figures and will resolve a lengthy probe by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
The SEC, in a statement Friday, said that between 2012 and 2016 FCA's U.S. unit issued monthly press releases falsely reporting new vehicle sales and falsely touting a "streak" of uninterrupted monthly year-over-year sales growth, when the growth streak had actually ended in September 2013. In July 2016, the company revised more than five years of monthly U.S. vehicle sales figures to reflect a new reporting method.
Two FCA dealerships filed a federal lawsuit over the inflated sales figures in January 2016. The case was settled earlier this year, but terms were not disclosed. Two other cases were filed by investors claiming securities fraud and those cases were later settled for $14.75 million, Bloomberg reported.
FROM OUR ARCHIVE: Sources: FCA found sales were inflated
FCA, in a statement issued Friday following the SEC announcement, said: "FCA US cooperated fully in the process to resolve this matter. The company has reviewed and refined its policies and procedures and is committed to maintaining strong controls regarding its sales reporting. The settlement requires a payment of $40 million which will not have a material impact on the financial statements of the company."