Apple’s “select” listing on the Nasdaq in jeopardy

Apple logoApple has informed investors that due to the ongoing investigation into their options backdating problems, they may be removed from the Nasdaq‘s special “Global Select Market.” How select, you may ask? Well, a mere 1/3 of companies listed on the Nasdaq are privileged enough to make the cut.

Wait, was that a typo? One-third of companies on the entire exchange are “select?” Kind of redefines the word now doesn’t it? According to the Times Online story:

Membership confers an extra degree of respectability on a company’s accounting and corporate governance procedures and, accordingly, gives investors an increased level of confidence.

Given all the tech companies that are having options troubles lately and the concentration of tech companies listed on the Nasdaq in general, this may not be the last one we hear with their “selectness” up in the air. Heck, Activision‘s on it and they just filed a non-reliance 8K for the past 15 year’s financials last week! More details:

Apple acknowledged in December that it had falsified records to show that a board meeting was held to approve the move when no such meeting took place. Apple also said that Mr Jobs was not aware of accounting implications of backdating and that he returned the options so that he would not benefit from the practice.

Fair enough. He’s not an accountant, after all. But was Mr Jobs unaware of the implications of falsifying records as well? Or is legitimate corporate record-keeping now… obsolete?

One thought on “Apple’s “select” listing on the Nasdaq in jeopardy

  1. As an audit guy, you will know how ‘stuff’ happens. Jobs may have convinced the board – or at least the board was allowed to be convinced – but I’ll bet a few $$ that Steve Jobs knew the implications. To hide behind the ‘I’m not an accountant’ jibe is to treat intelligent people with a degree of contempt I usually reserve for Bob Sutton’s definition of an ‘asshole.’ Sorry – I don’t buy it.

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