Managers knew of delays when they dumped stock

29th May 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, May 29, 2007 (AFP) - Top managers at Airbus parent company EADS knew about aircraft production delays likely to depress the company's share price when they sold their stock options in March, a French daily claimed Tuesday.

PARIS, May 29, 2007 (AFP) - Top managers at Airbus parent company EADS knew about aircraft production delays likely to depress the company's share price when they sold their stock options in March, a French daily claimed Tuesday.

The French stock market watchdog is investigating the stock option sale for possible insider trading.

On March 6, an internal production plan revised down this year's delivery target for A380 aircraft to 24 from an earlier 29.

The following day, there was an EADS board meeting in Amsterdam, the minutes of which do not mention the delay.

But French business daily La Tribune said it knew that, in a telephone conversation between businessman Jean Galli Douani and former Airbus technical director Alain Garcia, Garcia mentioned "serious industrial problems at Airbus" and "major" delays.

A recording of the conversation has been handed to the authorities, La Tribune said.

On March 7, the day after the board meeting, executive co-president Noel Forgeard got finance director Hans-Peter Ring to sign an authorisation for him to sell his stock options.

Subsequently, 85 percent of EADS's 800 top managers exercised their options.

Stock market authority AMF is to question the French co-president of EADS, Arnaud Lagardere, on Tuesday as part of its probe into possible insider trading in the affair.


Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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