Wal-Mart says loss likely from bribery probe

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 27, 2013 at 6:29 pm •  Published: March 27, 2013
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NEW YORK (AP) — Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said it is 'probable' that the world's largest retailer will incur a loss due to ongoing bribery investigations by itself and government agencies, but it says it is too early to speculate on the size of the damage.

The company said it does not currently expect the loss to be material. The statements came in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission filing late Tuesday.

Wal-Mart Stores has been dealing with allegations that surfaced last April that it failed to notify law enforcement that company officials authorized millions of dollars in payments in Mexico to speed up getting building permits and gain other favors. The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act forbids American companies from bribing foreign officials.

The company has launched its own investigation and is working with government officials in the U.S. and Mexico. In November, the retailer said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it was looking into potential U.S. bribery law violations in Brazil, China and India.

In another filing Tuesday with the SEC, Wal-Mart Stores said that it expects to incur costs above the $157 million it spent on the probes in fiscal 2013 because of its ongoing review and other investigations as well as shareholder lawsuits.

It also said it is "probable" that it will incur a loss from the matters, but did not give an estimate on how much.

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