STOCKHOLM, March 7 Sweden's Economic Crime
Authority is investigating eight suspected cases of insider
trading in Scania shares in connection with majority
owner Volkswagen's offer to buy out other shareholders in the
Swedish truck maker.
Volkswagen, Europe's biggest carmaker, last
month offered to buy out minority shareholders for 6.7 billion
euros ($9.27 billion).
"Prosecutors have taken the decision to look at it more
closely," a spokeswoman for the Economic Crime Authority said on
"The prosecutor has said it's a matter of millions of
crowns. We cannot be more precise than that."
Insider trading is illegal when a person with access to
confidential information about a company buys or sells its
shares before the information is made public.
The spokeswoman declined to say what had prompted the
Trading volumes in Scania were at a daily average of around
2.2 million shares in the three weeks before Volkswagen's bid on
Feb. 21, when the truckmaker was the subject of rumours about a
potential offer from its majority owner. That was slightly
higher than a 90-day average of 2.06 million shares.
Scania shares rose by more than 30 percent to trade at
194.50 Swedish crowns ($30.4) on Feb. 24 - the first day of
trade after Volkswagen's offer of 200 crowns per share.
The spokeswoman said that trades by two top Scania
executives three weeks before the German carmaker's bid were not
among the cases being investigated.
According to the Swedish Financial Surpervisory Authority's
list of trades by company executives, both Chief Executive
Martin Lundstedt and Chief Financial Executive Jan Ytterberg
bought shares on Jan. 30, the day after Scania reported
A Scania spokesman said none of Scania's five executive
directors were being investigated.
A Volkswagen spokesman said the carmaker made its offer
without prior contact with Scania's board. He declined to
comment on the Swedish investigation.
Scania shares were trading slightly lower at 195.6 crowns at
1525 GMT, broadly in line with the Stockholm blue-chip index
($1 = 6.4053 Swedish crowns)
($1 = 0.7225 euros)
(Reporting by Helena Soderpalm; additional reporting by Arno
Schuetze in Frankfurt; Editing by Erica Billingham)