Wiggins reassures shareholders

The statement given on the London Stock Exchange news services, said: ‘Directors of Wiggins Group plc advise that they are confident the company’s prospects are stronger than ever. The board is looking forward to the future with continued optimism.’

A report in today’s FT said the company did not expect to face any further action, regarding its financial reporting, following reports about a possible probe by City watchdog, the Financial Services Authority.

Yesterday, a spokesperson for the FSA told the regulatory body was concerned about the information Wiggins had put out to its shareholders and was likely ‘to look into the matter’.

The FSA comments followed a reissue of Wiggins’ accounts on 8 March 2001 after the company was threatened with legal action from the Financial Reporting Review Panel.

An FSA probe would increase the number of ongoing inquiries at Wiggins to three. Last week, Accountancy Age reported CIMA was investigating Geoff Lansbury, FD at Wiggins, while company auditors HLB Kidsons may face disciplinary action from the ICAEW, which is studying the FRRP’s findings.

Initially, the company declared profits of Pounds 48.9m for the six-year period, but revised this to a loss of Pounds 25.2m, a net change of Pounds 74.1m. This meant Wiggins incurred losses for each of the last six accounting periods instead of profits, as were originally reported.


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