NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Petrobras (PBR) is now under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice and the SEC relating to allegations of bribery against the Brazilian state-controlled oil company, as Petrobras continues to deal with its own domestic corruption inquiries, the Financial Times reports.
The DOJ has started a criminal investigation into Petrobras' conduct, while the SEC is seeking a civil investigation, sources told the FT.
The U.S. is looking to uncover if Petrobras, or any of its employees, violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which makes it illegal to bribe foreign officials in an attempt to "win or retain business," the FT added.
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The company is also facing a probe by Brazilian prosecutors who believe Petrobras and its contractors overinflated the cost of capital expenditure projects and acquisitions by several hundred million dollars, and then paid some of the money to politicians from the Workers' Party, the current ruling party in Brazil, FT noted.
The Workers' Party and its coalition have continually denied these allegations.
Shares of Petrobras are lower by 2.11 to $10.67 in mid-morning trading on Monday.
Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates PETROBRAS-PETROLEO BRASILIER as a Hold with a ratings score of C. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate PETROBRAS-PETROLEO BRASILIER (PBR) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and attractive valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins."