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Saks Ups Total Of Improper Markdowns

Saks Incorporated management recently finished its internal investigation of improper vendor markdown allowances first discovered by independent auditors and found that the amounts collected were larger and spanned a longer period of time than first thought.

The company stated that is had confirmed facts first found by independent investigators that during the company's 1999-2003 fiscal years, one of six Saks Fifth Avenue (SFAE) merchandising divisions improperly collected markdown allowances from vendors.

However, while the independent investigators found improper markdowns totaling $20 million, the recently released internal investigation has upped that number to $26 million during the same period. Additionally, the investigation found that $8.2 million in improper markdowns was collected from 1996-1998.

“These amounts are attributable to over-collections that resulted from falsification, by merchants in the one SFAE division, of information delivered to vendors,” the company stated.

The company has advising the affected vendors that it intends to reimburse them for the charges, with interest of 7.25 percent per year totaling approximately $14 million.

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