November 20, 2012 / 1:26 AM / 5 years ago

Singapore's Olam says Muddy Waters assertions 'baseless'

SINGAPORE, Nov 20 (Reuters) - Singapore commodities firm Olam International Ltd said short-seller Muddy Waters made “baseless and unsubstantiated assertions”, after media reports quoted Muddy Waters’ Carson Block as questioning the company’s accounting practices.

“We are dismayed at the nature and lack of substance of these assertions and opinions about Olam’s financial position, particularly as we were not contacted in advance by Carson Block or anyone else from Muddy Waters,” Olam said in a statement on Tuesday after it halted its shares from trading.

Media reports quoted Block as saying he was betting against Olam after questioning its accounting practices.

“We await the publication of their detailed report in this regard today before we address issues raised by them in this proposed report. We will defend Olam’s strong reputation for transparency and good governance against these baseless and unsubstantiated assertions,” Olam said.

Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings has a nearly 16 percent stake in Olam, Thomson Reuters data shows. Last week, Olam reported a 26 percent rise in first-quarter net profit, spurring a rally in its shares. (Reporting by Eveline Danubrata and Anshuman Daga; Editing by Edmund Klamann)

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