View from City Road: Smear tactics at new heights

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The Independent Online
That time-honoured practice of using accounting as a smear tactic has achieved new heights with Lasmo's allegation that Enterprise is breaching rules and standards. But it does little to change the impression that the bid battle is between the weak and the infirm.

Lasmo is right to point out that, by writing off 90 per cent of the value of assets acquired, Enterprise had to charge less depreciation against them in the future. That may flatter profits, but to claim this breaches accounting standards is at least arguable.

It is also pretty rich from a company which hid a pounds 400 loss on selling Ultramar assets in the small print and seems to have changed its own accounting practices more times than Graham Hearne has had hot dinners.

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