Qwest Communications International has announced that its accounting irregularities amounted to more than $1.1 billion of transactions from 1999 to 2001. The Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice were already examining Qwest’s business practices.
Qwest informed the S.E.C. that it will restate its financial reportings for 1999 to 2001, but its new CEO, Richard C. Notebaert, insisted that it would not file for bankruptcy protection due to these accounting irregularities. Qwest’s shares fell 7% on Friday and closed at $1.50, a 94% decline over the past year. Qwest, based in Denver, Colorado, spent $50 billion in its U S West acquisition in 1999. The accounting irregularities appear to stem from swaps of communications capacity with other fiber optic companies.