The Strategist

SEC investigates BMW in USA over sales reporting

12/25/2019 - 07:34

US authorities have launched an investigation into BMW due to company reporting. The financial market regulator found the sales information suspicious as BMW is overtaking its main competitor, Mercedes-Benz.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has launched an investigation into BMW over the company’s reporting. BMW’s spokesman told the newspaper that the US authorities contacted the company, and that it intends to cooperate in the investigation. SEC spokesman told Bloomberg that the commission did not comment on any investigations.

According to WSJ, an investigation into BMW is related to car sales statistics. The SEC will check to see if BMW dealers have forced units to mark cars as sold when they actually remain in the parking lot, the newspaper said. In the American premium car market, BMW competes with Mercedes-Benz, which is released by Daimler AG. This year, BMW sales were slightly ahead, although Mercedes-Benz has remained the leader for the past three years, Bloomberg said.

Dealers previously complained that BMW forced them to buy cars from the manufacturer for the reserve fleet, Bloomberg notes. The vehicles were loaned to drivers who handed over their cars for repairs or maintenance, but sellers had to mark the cars as sold. To resell them already as used, dealers had to make a discount and reduce the price. BMW in exchange offered bonuses to dealers, wrote Bloomberg.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV concern was fined for similar violations a few months ago. In September, the company agreed to pay $ 40 million due to inaccurate reporting. The Italian-American manufacturer paid dealers to fake sales reports, thereby misleading investors. This became known when one of the retailers went to court in January 2016.