Business, Economics and Jobs

Wal-Mart bribery: Mexican attorney general opens new probe as WMT shares rise


A Wal-Mart supermarket in Mexico City is seen today.

A second investigation by Mexican authorities into bribery allegations at Wal-Mart has been opened, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Mexico’s anti-corruption body, the Public Administration Department, had announced yesterday that it would investigate the potential involvement of federal officials in bribes allegedly paid by Wal-Mart de Mexico, the country’s largest employer.

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The US Justice Department has been investigating Wal-Mart since December after the company told market regulators in Washington of an internal review. The company made the disclosure after learning that The New York Times was reporting on the matter.

The Times reported in its Sunday edition that Wal-Mart had buried an internal probe which indicated its subsidiary had paid $24 million in bribes in Mexico.

In a statement cited by he Journal, Mexico’s Attorney General Marisela Morales said her office’s Wal-Mart investigation was in a fact-finding stage and could involve seeking information from official bodies, individuals and companies.

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After three straight days of losses, shares in Wal-Mart closed up $1.59, or 2.77 percent, at $58.95. This was not enough to restore losses incurred since the New York Times report. The price was sinking again in after-hours electronic trading.