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FBI, SEC investigating FCA

by Bill Cawthon on

According to Bloomberg News, the Justice Department has launched an investigation into FCA US’ sales reporting, following accusations by a dealer group. Federal officials are also investigating investors’ claims that FCA mis-led them by downplaying the impact of recalls.

2015 US sales

Automotive News Larry Vellequette wrote that FBI and SEC agents went to FCA’s headquarters and the company’s field representatives’ homes and offices on July 11.

[Full story: dealership group’s claims of sales shenanigans; FCA’s denial and counter-attack.]

The dealer group’s case (reported as two separate dealerships, both owned by one company) is that FCA demanded that sales be reported for the current month, then cancelled, to make quotas. FCA sales have been increasing steadily for years.

The investors’ case is that FCA made false and misleading claims to investors about  manufacturing processes and quality control, leading to large-scale recalls.  FCA has asked the judge to dismiss the case. A similar claim by GM investors has been rejected by a district judge.

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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