Oracle stock today was trading at $63.48 as of 10:24 AM EDT
The Securities and Exchange Commission has ordered Oracle to pay a $23 million fine in order to resolve allegations that Oracle (NYSE:ORCL) used slush funds to bribe foreign officials between 2016 and 2019 in order to acquire a business.
The American agency claimed that Oracle’s (NYSE:ORCL) subsidiaries in India, the United Arab Emirates, and Turkey developed and utilized slush funds in order to secure business. Subsidiaries of Oracle (NYSE:ORCL) paid for foreign officials to go to Turkey and the UAE for technology conferences, and in some cases, the officials’ families went with them on those excursions to other countries and on side trips to California.
After settling allegations in 2012, Oracle (NYSE:ORCL) was cleared of charges related to the fabrication of slush funds used for illegal activities in India.
The SEC’s FCPA Unit Chief, Charles Cain, stated in a statement that the formation of off-book slush funds carries an inherent risk that the money will be misused, which is precisely what occurred at Oracle’s subsidiaries in Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, and India. This situation underlines the urgent necessity for efficient internal accounting controls across all areas of a company’s activities.
Despite neither admitting nor disputing the allegations, ORCL agreed to stop violating the FCPA’s anti-bribery, books and records, and internal financial control rules. Oracle (NYSE:ORCL) produced first-quarter results earlier this month that were above expectations because of the strength in the cloud, earning accolades from numerous Wall Street analysts.
Oracle Stock Outlook
ORCL did not confirm or deny that it had broken the FCPA as part of the settlement, but it did promise to “stop and desist” from doing so. Disgorgement of $8 million and a penalty of $15 million are both included in the payment. The S&P 500 SPX, +1.02% has lost 22.3% year to date, while Oracle stock has fallen 26.4% through Monday.
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