SEC opens probe into IBM revenue

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is investigating IBM's bookkeeping methods.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is investigating IBM's bookkeeping methods.

The SEC is looking for information regarding the company's recognition of revenue in 2000 or 2001, according to a statement released by IBM.

An SEC spokesman declined to comment on IBM's statement, saying that the agency's staff cannot confirm or deny the existence of any investigations. However, IBM did offer some details on the probe.

It said it believed the investigation is related to a separate investigation of one of its Retail Store Solutions unit customers. That IBM unit sells point-of-sale technology such as cash registers, kiosks, printers and bar-code scanners to grocery stores, food services companies and other retail companies. IBM did not identify the customer.

In its communication with IBM, the SEC characterised its inquiry as a "fact-finding investigation". IBM said its business and accounting policies comply with "applicable regulations", adding that it wa co-operating fully with the SEC investigation.

Paul Roberts writes for IDG News Service

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