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Tech Industry

Analyst group drops out of Amazon criticism

A group of security analysts is dropping out of a public forum that made headlines for pressuring the giant e-tailer to clarify its financial information.

A group of security analysts is dropping out of a public forum that made headlines for pressuring Amazon.com to clarify its financial information.

The New York Society of Security Analysts (NYSSA), an 8,000-member organization devoted to advancing the quality of security analysis, has ended its participation in the forum conducted by the Committee for Corporate Governance and Shareholder Rights, said Gary Lutin, the forum's co-sponsor.

This spring, the forum's leadership raised eyebrows when it called for Amazon to explain its financial standing, even going as far as threatening to take legal action against Amazon unless it released the information. Besides Amazon, the forum has scrutinized Dun & Bradstreet on governance issues.

Phone calls to the NYSSA were not returned Friday.

While many New Economy companies have come under fire for reporting earnings on a pro forma basis, Amazon is among the most high-profile companies to practice the accounting method.

The NYSSA's decision comes as federal regulators have begun scrutinizing Wall Street's handling of financial information during the investor craze over tech stocks during the late 1990s.

Lutin said Friday that he's disappointed with the NYSSA's decision but plans to continue with other sponsors.

"I don't think the NYSSA's action will have anything to do to change the interest of the general public in these issues," Lutin said. "It only harms the position of the NYSSA to provide leadership."