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Activision Sued Over Stock Options

An SEC filing has revealed that major publisher Activision is the subject of a lawsuit from a shareholder over what are described as "purported improprieties in the Compa...
An SEC filing has revealed that major publisher Activision is the subject of a lawsuit from a shareholder over what are described as "purported improprieties in the Company's issuance of stock options", possibly relating to the currently hot topic of option backdating. The full announcement from Activision, Inc. reveals that the company "...has been notified that an individual claiming to be a shareholder of the Company has filed a derivative lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court, purportedly on behalf of the Company, against certain current and former members of the Company's Board of Directors as well as several current and former officers of the Company." It continues: "The complaint, styled Vazquez v. Kotick, et. al, which was filed on July 12, 2006, alleges, among other things, purported improprieties in the Company's issuance of stock options. The Company is reviewing the allegations in the complaint and will respond appropriately." The complaint may echo a recent official SEC announcement that Take-Two was being investigated by the agency over the granting of stock options, particularly with reference to when the options were dated when they were handed out. An Associated Press story regarding the recent Take-Two statement explains this issue: "Take-Two is one of a growing number of companies under internal or Securities and Exchange Commission investigations for possible mishandling of stock option grants. Many companies are alleged to have backdated stock option grants to time them at share price lows, thus boosting gains on the sale of the stock."

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