Dell restates earnings after internal probe

Dell has completed an internal accounting investigation and restated its financial results from its 2003 financial year to the first quarter of 2007,.

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The move brings it into compliance with listing requirements specified by the Nasdaq stock exchange.

For the restatement period, Dell cut its cumulative net income by $92m (£46m) from a previously reported net income of $12bn, said Dell spokesman Bob Pearson. The cumulative change to earnings per share was $0.03 from the previously reported $4.78, he said.

Dell also reduced revenue by $359m from the previously reported $196.2bn for the restatement period, Pearson said.

While it was carrying out its own probe of accounting problems during the quarter and under investigation by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Dell faced delisting on the Nasdaq several times for failing to file earnings reports to the SEC on time. The SEC is still investigating Dell for certain periods prior to fiscal year 2006. Dell will continue to cooperate and work with the SEC on the investigation, Pearson said.

Among a string of filings yesterday (30 October), Dell said in a 10-Q/A filing for the quarter ended May 5, 2006, that it recognised the wrong amount of revenue from certain transactions or recognised revenue in the wrong period. In some cases, Dell prematurely recognised revenue before it settled the terms of sale with a customer, Dell said in the filing.

Dell is trying to restructure amid the accounting scandal, personnel changes and slow growth in the US. PC market. In January, Michael Dell returned as CEO after Kevin Rollins resigned, in an effort to revive the company. In May, Dell announced it would cut 10% of its workforce. It is also battling Hewlett-Packard, which is closing in on Dell's position as the leading U.S. PC vendor, according to a recent IDC study.

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