FOIA Data Shows Amgen Has A Recently Confirmed, But Undisclosed SEC Probe

| About: Amgen Inc. (AMGN)

Summary

In a letter to us dated 15-December-2015, the SEC confirmed enforcement proceedings were on-going at Amgen. This is not the first time we learned of undisclosed investigative activity at Amgen.

Repeated searches of this company’s SEC filings back to May-2012, found no clear disclosures of SEC investigative activity.

All we know about the SEC probe at this time is that it somehow pertains to the conduct, transactions, and/or disclosures of Amgen, Inc.

While this could be serious, it may not be. The mere existence of an investigation should not be construed as an indication that any violations of the law have occurred.

Amgen reports earnings on Thursday, January 28, 2016.

Author's Note: To produce our research reports, we file about 2,500 Freedom of Information Act requests per year with the SEC. We have been conducting this sort of independent research since 2000. We have no positions in Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) nor did anyone pay us to write this report. Those with an interest are encouraged to follow-up with the company directly. The full text of the following report was previously published and available for free at probesreporter.com on 15-Jan-2016.

Analyst Summary: We first learned of undisclosed SEC investigative activity at Amgen in Sep-2013. Inconsistent responses from the SEC suggest there may have been more than one investigation in this period. As of 15-Dec-2015, however, the SEC again confirmed on-going enforcement proceedings at Amgen that remain undisclosed.

Analysis and Opinion: Inconsistent responses from the SEC over time are one of the many reasons we research the same companies repeatedly. The focus for investors today should be on a data point from the SEC now pointing to a confirmed, undisclosed SEC probe at Amgen.

The best question to ask Amgen is what communications, if any, it's had with the SEC's Division of Enforcement in the past year.

Ideally, the answer is none. However, the SEC's recent confirmation of on-going enforcement proceedings suggests something is going on.

Facts of Interest or Concern: In Jun-2014, the SEC had previously confirmed that this company was somehow involved in an active and ongoing investigation that was undisclosed at the time. However, in Dec-2014, it indicated no investigative records were found. That Dec-2014 response could have been made in error, as we know there was a probe confirmed as on-going as of Jun-2014. Or, perhaps, there simply was no investigation at the time.

Now, in a letter dated 17-Nov-2015, we received information from the SEC suggesting this company was again involved in unspecified SEC investigative activity. We filed an administrative appeal to challenge this latest response. In our experience, over two-thirds of these SEC responses are confirmed on appeal. This was one of them. In a letter dated 15-Dec-2015, the SEC confirmed enforcement proceedings were on-going at Amgen.

All we know about the SEC probe at this time is that it somehow pertains to the conduct, transactions, and/or disclosures of Amgen, Inc. We continue to find no disclosure of SEC investigative activity at this time.

Confirmed Undisclosed SEC Investigation - On Watch List: This indicator is assigned when the SEC confirmed this company's involvement in on-going enforcement proceedings as basis to deny our Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request and subsequent appeal. A confirmed investigation is the highest standard we can achieve regarding undisclosed SEC activity at a public company. While an SEC investigation may go nowhere, the potential harm from an undisclosed SEC probe can also be quite serious. This company will be tracked on our Watch List of companies with undisclosed SEC probes until such time it is either disclosed or new data from the SEC causes us to revise the indicator.

Documents Acquired Under the Freedom of Information Act: None in our library at this time.

Notable Disclosures: Repeated searches of this company's SEC filings back to May-2012, found no clear disclosures of SEC investigative activity.

Notable Freedom of Information Act History/Data from the Probes Reporter Database

10-Sep-2012

FOIA Response

No SEC investigative records found.

10-Sep-2013

FOIA Response

Possible SEC investigation; access to records blocked.

17-Apr-2014

FOIA Response

Possible SEC investigation; access to records blocked.

19-Apr-2014

PR Research

No disclosure of SEC investigative activity found in past two years. Added to Watch List.

4-Jun-2014

Appeal Response

On-going enforcement proceedings confirmed; access to records blocked.

27-Jun-2014

PR Research

No disclosure of SEC investigative activity found in past two years. Maintained on Watch List.

18-Dec-2014

FOIA Response

No SEC investigative records found.

18-Dec-2014

PR Research

Removed from Watch List

17-Nov-2015

FOIA Response

Possible SEC investigation; access to records blocked.

15-Dec-2015

Appeal Response

On-going enforcement proceedings confirmed; access to records blocked.

14-Jan-2016

PR Research

No disclosure of SEC investigative activity found in past two years. Added to Watch List.

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Notes: All companies with undisclosed SEC investigations are maintained on our Watch List of companies with undisclosed SEC probes. The SEC did not disclose the details on investigations referenced herein. All we know is that they somehow pertain to the conduct, transactions, and/or disclosures of the companies referenced. The SEC reminds us that its assertion of the law enforcement exemption should not be construed as an indication by the Commission or its staff that any violations of law have occurred with respect to any person, entity, or security. New SEC investigative activity could theoretically begin or end after the date covered by this latest information which would not be reflected here.

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