HP blames quarterly loss on Autonomy fraud

Meg Whitman concedes the Governor's race to candidate during a campaign party on November 2, 2010 in Universal City, Calif. Now CEO of HP, Whitman's company is facing trouble. They announced today that an acquisition, Autonomy, committed fraud.

Hewlett Packard says fraud is behind the big quarterly loss it unveiled this morning. The personal computing company is writing down $9 billion because of what it calls financial "misrepresentations" by Autonomy,  a company it acquired last year.

The company claims that they have evidence of fraudulent misconduct, according to Neil MacDonald, who follows HP as an analyst with Gartner.

HP is also saying that it overpaid for Autonomy because of these misrepresentations, and that it has turned over documents  that supports these claims to the SEC for further investigation.

The tech giant had hoped to get back on course when it chose Meg Whitman to be its CEO. 

"You have to look past the headlines and look into the financials," says MacDonald. "There are areas of bright spots that have been overlooked by the headlines. Yeah over year, revenue is up 14 percent."

About the author

Jeff Horwich is the interim host of Marketplace Morning Report and a sometime-Marketplace reporter.

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