AKRON (Oct. 27, 2003) — Less than a week after Goodyear announced it would restate more than five years of earnings because of an accounting error, at least six law firms have filed class-action lawsuits against the tire maker and are looking for plaintiffs.
The complaints charge the Akron-based tire maker with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, essentially for issuing a series of material misrepresentations to the market from October 1998 to October 2003. Those actions, the firms charge, artificially inflated the price of Goodyear's stock to the detriment of shareholders.
A Goodyear spokesman said the company had not yet seen the complaints and could not comment.
On Oct. 22, Goodyear announced it would restate earnings from 1998 through the first two quarters of 2003 because of errors in the implementation of a computerized accounting system and in inter-company billing. The restatement is expected to reduce net income over the period by up to $100 million and reduce shareholder equity by up to $120 million.
Firms pursuing lawsuits against Goodyear are: Bull & Lifshitz L.L.P. and Abbey Gardy L.L.P. of New York; Cauley Geller Bowman & Rudman L.L.P. of Little Rock, Ark.; Schiffrin & Barroway L.L.P. of Bala Cynwyd, Pa.; Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach L.L.P. of San Diego; and Scott & Scott L.L.C. of Colchester, Conn.