Xerox Corp., the world’s largest maker of high-speed color printers, has received preliminary court approval to settle the investor lawsuit that has been in court for eight years for $670 million. Xerox will pay the settlement into a fund in five installments this year and co-defendant KPMG LLP, Xerox’s former auditor, will pay an additional $80 million. The case, filed in 2000 in U.S. District Court in New Haven, Connecticut, claimed that Xerox misled investors about its financial health. The dispute concerns common stock and bonds bought from February 17, 1998, to June 27, 2002. Within that time frame, the company’s stock closed as high as $63.69 in May 1999 and as low as $4.43 in December 2000 on a split-adjusted basis. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission levied a $10 million fine against Xerox in 2002, saying executives led a four-year scheme to inflate revenue to meet analysts’ growth estimates. The company restated results for 1997 to 2000 as a result of the SEC probe.
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