Singapore MAS, police say Noble under investigation for disclosure breaches

Signage at the SGX building on Shenton Way in Singapore; taken October 2018.Signage at the SGX building on Shenton Way in Singapore; taken October 2018.

Troubled commodity trader Noble Group is under investigation for suspected false and misleading statements and breaches of disclosure requirements under the Securities and Futures Act, the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) of the Singapore Police Force, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) said in a joint statement.

Representatives of Noble Group did not immediately respond to Shenton Wire’s emailed request for comment.

Wholly owned subsidiary, Noble Resources International, was also under investigation for potential non-compliance with accounting standards under the Companies Act, the joint statement said.

“ACRA has notified NRI’s Board of Directors that ACRA has made findings of suspected breaches of the Companies Act and has required the directors to furnish further information as part of the ongoing investigation,” the statement said. “This follows an extensive review of the financial statements of NRI for the financial years ended 31 December 2012 to 31 December 2016.”

Both CAD and MAS have told Noble Group and NRI to provide documentation relating to preparing Noble Group financial statements after it reviewed other relevant information, including information referred by the Singapore Exchange Regulation and other third parties, the statement said.

Putting a period to a long-running restructuring drama, troubled commodity trader Noble Group on Friday had requested its shares be suspended from trade. The shares closed at S$0.081 on Friday, a far cry from their height of around S$18.14 touched in early 2011.

For its third quarter, Noble reported earlier this month that revenue from continuing operations fell 17 percent on-year to US$1.46 billion, and its net loss narrowed to US$99.0 million from a loss of US$1.17 billion in the year-ago quarter.

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