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Checking In On Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart

In today’s 3Q FY2018 earnings call presentation and related transcript, Wal-Mart disclosed that “discussions with the government agencies in the FCPA matter have progressed to the point that the company recorded an accrual of $283 million, or $0.09 per share … regarding the possible resolution of the FCPA matter.”

Against the backdrop of certain commentators using the “b” word (as in billions), I predicted from the start, guided by FCPAnalytics, that Wal-Mart’s Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action was unlikely to be a top five FCPA settlement amount of all-time. If the $283 million amount holds, the Wal-Mart enforcement action will not even be in the top ten FCPA settlements of all-time.

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Friday Roundup

Roundup

Funny headline, just plain silly, new SEC FCPA Unit Chief, parallel, scrutiny alerts and updates, company continues to “boil the ocean,” and ISO 37001 related. It’s all here in the Friday Roundup.

Funny Headline

This Global Investigations Review post contains the headline “Former FCPA Unit Chiefs Defend the ‘Revolving Door’”.

That’s funny. I suppose if I moved from a government enforcement attorney position to a multimillion dollar position in FCPA Inc. defending companies against the enforcement climate I helped create, I might defend the practice as well.

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Friday Roundup

Roundup

Overhead at the town hall meeting, sentenced, investigative fees, “fake” FCPA news, fairly obvious, hook-line-and-sinker, fore, pardon me for being a stickler, ISO37001 related, and purely speculative and not credible.

It’s all here in the Friday roundup

Overhead at the Town Hall Meeting

I can’t imagine that the FCPA is a frequent topic of discussion at New England town hall meetings. But as highlighted here it was recently a topic of discussion as “the new operator of a popular ski resort in New Hampshire [Och-Ziff]  faced off against concerned residents, some of whom fear the company’s past legal troubles raise doubts about whether it was the right choice to oversee the facility.”

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Checking In On Wal-Mart’s Pre-Enforcement Action Professional Fees And Compliance Enhancements

Wal-Mart

In its recent 2Q FY2018 earnings call presentation Wal-Mart disclosed $12 million in Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and compliance related expenses ($7 million for ongoing investigations and inquiries and $5 million for global compliance program and organizational enhancements). The Q2 expenses of $12 million compare to the following recent quarterly expenses (Q1 FY2018 $16 million; Q4 FY2017 $17 million; Q3  FY2017 $29 million; Q2 FY 2017 $28 million, and Q1 FY2017 $25 million).

Doing the math, Wal-Mart’s 2Q FY2018 FCPA and compliance-related costs is approximately $195,000 per working day.

Over the past 5 years, I have tracked Wal-Mart’s quarterly disclosed pre-enforcement action professional fees and expenses. While some pundits ridiculed me for doing so, it quickly caught on as the popular thing to do.

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Is Cognizant Technology “Boiling The Ocean”?

Boiling the Ocean

This prior post highlighted the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act scrutiny of Cognizant Technology Solutions first disclosed in late September 2016. This post discussed how the company’s FCPA scrutiny presented an interesting, albeit early, FCPA case study as to the FCPA’s many “ripples.” (See here for the article “FCPA Ripples“).

The case study has become all the more interesting given that Cognizant recently disclosed: “in 2016, we incurred $27 million in costs related to the FCPA investigation and related lawsuits. We expect to continue to incur expenses related to these matters in 2017 and future periods.”

The question ought to be asked: is Cognizant “boiling the ocean”?

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