SEC Document


We could be adversely affected by violations of the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and similar anti-bribery laws of other countries, as well as trade sanctions administered by the office of Foreign Assets Control and the Department of Commerce.

The U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (‘‘FCPA’’) and similar anti-bribery laws of other countries generally prohibit companies and their intermediaries from making improper payments to governmental officials or others for the purpose of obtaining or retaining business or for other unfair advantage. Our policies mandate compliance with these anti-bribery laws. We operate in many parts of the world that have experienced governmental corruption to some degree and, in certain circumstances, strict compliance with anti-bribery laws may conflict with local customs and practices. Although we have internal controls and procedures designed to ensure compliance with these laws, there can be no assurance that our controls and procedures will prevent a violation of these laws.

We are required to comply with U.S. regulations on trade sanctions and embargoes administered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”), the Commerce Department and similar multi-national bodies and governmental agencies worldwide, which are complex and constantly changing.  A violation thereof could subject us to regulatory enforcement actions, including a loss of export privileges and significant civil and criminal penalties and fines.

Violations of these laws, or allegations of such violations, could disrupt our business and result in a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial condition, and cash flows.

Our operations are subject to the effect of global tax law changes, some of which have been, and may be in the future, retroactive in application.

Our operations are subject to various federal, state, local and foreign tax laws and regulations which govern, among other things, taxes on worldwide income. Any potential tax law changes may, for example, increase applicable tax rates, have retroactive application, or impose stricter compliance requirements in the jurisdictions in which we operate, which could reduce our consolidated net earnings.

In response to, for instance, an economic crisis or recession, governments may revise tax laws, regulations or official interpretations in ways that could have a significant impact on us, including modifications that could, for example, reduce the profits that we can effectively realize from our non-U.S. operations, or that could require costly changes to those operations, or the way in which they are structured. If changes in tax laws, regulations or interpretations were to significantly increase the tax rates on non-U.S. income, our effective tax rate could increase, our profits could be reduced, and if such increases were a result of our status as a U.S. company, could place us at a disadvantage to our non-U.S. competitors if those competitors remain subject to lower local tax rates.

Further, legislative and regulatory action may be taken in the U.S. which, if ultimately enacted, could subject us to increased taxes which could adversely affect our effective tax rate.

We cannot predict the outcome or timing of any specific legislative, regulatory or other tax proposals or changes.

We could be adversely affected by failure to comply with federal, state and local government procurement regulations and requirements.

We have contracts with and supply product to federal, state and local governmental entities and their contractors, and are required to comply with specific procurement regulations and other requirements relating to those contracts and sales.  Requirements in our contracts and those requirements flowed down to us in our capacity as a subcontractor or supplier, although customary in government contracts, may impact our performance and compliance costs.  Failure to comply with these regulations and requirements or to make required disclosures under contract could result in reductions of the value of contracts, contract modifications or termination for cause, adverse past performance ratings, actions under a federal or state false claims statute, suspension or debarment from government contracting or subcontracting for a period of time and the assessment of penalties and fines, any of which could negatively impact our results of operations and financial condition and could have a negative impact on our reputation and ability to procure other government contracts in the future.

Terrorist activities and other acts of violence or war, natural disasters and other disruptions have negatively impacted in the past and could negatively impact in the future the U.S. and foreign countries, the financial markets, the industries in which we compete, our operations and profitability.

Terrorist activities and natural disasters have contributed to economic instability in the U.S. and elsewhere, and further acts of terrorism, cyber-terrorism, violence, war or natural disasters could affect the industries in which we compete, our ability to purchase raw materials or make, sell or distribute products, which could have a material adverse impact on our financial condition and results of operations.



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