US Gov Pulls Info on Companies doing Business with Terrorist States

A month ago, the SEC put up a site to identify companies doing business with the likes of Iran, Syria and the Sudan. Linking only to annual reports by the companies, the site allowed investors to read the companies' own explanations, plans, and history. The purpose of the web site was to give investors an opportunity to decide whether they wanted to invest in such companies. Yesterday, at 5:00 pm, they took the site down. The reasons -- incompetence on the Government's side and pressure by the companies. So much for the US government at work for you.

A month ago, the SEC put up a site to identify companies doing business with the likes of Iran, Syria and the Sudan.  Linking only to annual reports by the companies, the site allowed investors to read the companies' own explanations, plans, and history.  The purpose of the web site was to give investors an opportunity to decide whether they wanted to invest in such companies.  Yesterday, at 5:00 pm, they took the site down.  The reasons -- incompetence on the Government's side and pressure by the companies.  So much for the US government at work for you.

It appears that the site included a few such companies as Reuters, the news company, that by the nature of their business had to have some presence is these rogue nations.  But the list also included many others (57 in Iran, 8 in North Korea, 35 in Sudan, and 24 in Syria) who just maybe shouldn't be in such places and certainly should be known to investors.  They took the site down, rather than improve and refine it, after a lot of pressure from those in government and from companies.  They say they will be reworking it and putting it up again.  I bet the site will never see the light of day again.

Too bad.  It is really helpful to know who is and who is not doing business with Terrorist states.  I, for one, as an investor make real decisions based on such data.

The New York Times covered this story in the following article:  http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/21/business/21sec.html?_r=1&oref=slogin 

 

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Comments

  • Anonymous

    July 22, 2007

    I would sure like to see that web site. Wish I had known about it before they took it down.

  • Anonymous

    July 28, 2007

    Why did they pull it? They must have been under pressure from someone.

  • Dave Lloyd

    August 07, 2007

    My hunch is that this was driven by an effort to improve relations with France's new government as Total, the French oil company, was high on the list.

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