The Securities and Exchange Commission investigating Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (BMW) for possible manipulation of sales figures, according to The Wall Street Journal. The SEC is specifically looking into whether BMW has been engaging in a practice known as sales punching in the U.S., which is when a company boosts sales figures by having dealers register cars as sold when the vehicles actually are still standing on car lots.
Other car companies are also under investigation for suspected data falsifications and misleading investors. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV in September agreed to pay $40 million to settle claims by the SEC that the company paid dealers to report exaggerated sales numbers for several years. Fiat Chrysler also revised monthly sales results going back several years, nullifying a 75-month streak of sales increases. BMW sold 322,862 vehicles in the U.S. in the first nine months of the year, an increase of 1.7% from a year ago, including its namesake BMW brands and its Mini brand.
Jeffrey Newman represents whistleblowers nation wide. He can be reached at Jeff@JeffNewmanLaw.com. or by calling 617-823-3217