Dell plays down impact of 2003-06 restatements

Texas-based PC manufacturer Dell this week filed restatements of its 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2006 annual results to reduce revenue and profit figures that were inflated in the original accounts.

A Dell spokesman was widely reported as claiming that the cumulative reduction of earnings amounted to $92 million over the four-year period, when the company's net income was more than $12 billion.

The yearly affect of the change was typically a 1-3 cent addition to the earnings per share figure.

The full 10-K filing report is available from the SEC and with the latest filings, the company said in an official press statement it expected to achieve compliance with NASDAQ's continued listing requirements.

However, the company also indicated that it and several current and former executives are parties to a number of shareholder lawsuits arising from the accounting irregularites. Four class action suits have been consolidated into a single "Dell Securities Litigation" case in the Western District of Texas, Austin division. If and when the cases reach court, the restatements and their financial impact are likely to be scrutinized in more detail.

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