Tesco to close the book on £326m accounting scandal

Tesco is close to settling the final shareholder legal claims over a 2014 accounting scandal which pushed it to the brink of financial disaster.

When Britain’s biggest retailer admitted overstating profits by £326 million, investors were furious at what they said were attempts to manipulate its share price.

Sky News reports that, alongside its half-year results on Wednesday, Tesco could reveal that it has agreed a substantial payout with a group of shareholders.

Industry sources believe they could include Norges Bank, the Norwegian sovereign wealth fund.

READ MORE: Tesco labelled ‘worst supermarket for forest destruction’

Tesco is likely to hand over more than £100 million, adding to a series of earlier settlements thought to total several hundred million pounds.

This is on top of a £129 million fine it paid as part of a plea deal with the Serious Fraud Office (SFO).

Three executives were charged with fraud in 2016, although the case against them later collapsed.

Tesco declined to comment.

On Monday, Tesco shares rose amid speculation that it could be a target for a private equity bid following the £7 billion takeover of Morrisons.

Shares are currently trading at 252.4p, up 5p since Friday.

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