Regulators from the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) are investigating claims that former HP chief executive Mark Hurd shared inside information about HP's plans to buy EDS in 2008.
According to a report on The Wall Street Journal web site, the SEC is carrying out a broad inquiry into Hurd, which includes an investigation into his departure from HP.
"HP is co-operating fully with the SEC on its investigation," an HP spokesman told V3.co.uk.
The WSJ said that the SEC will assess claims that Hurd, who is now co-president at Oracle, shared information about HP's plans to buy EDS with a former HP event hostess before the deal was officially announced.
The SEC is also said to be looking into whether Hurd misused his expense account while having a relationship with Jodie Fisher, the consultant at the heart of his exit from HP.
"Mark acted properly in all respects," Glenn Bunting, a spokesman for Hurd, told the WSJ. "It is understandable that the SEC is looking into the events surrounding Mark's departure, which was followed by a precipitous drop in the value of HP's stock."
Hurd's exit from HP was nothing if not controversial. Kick-started by claims of sexual harassment and signed off with a huge redundancy payout, his exit sent shockwaves through the firm.
The HP board was accused of lacking in leadership over Hurd's departure by industry figures including Oracle chief Larry Ellison, who later hired Hurd.
In a strongly worded letter to The New York Times, HP chairman Ray Lane hit back at the claims.
"[Hurd] violated the trust of the board by repeatedly lying to them in the course of an investigation into his conduct," Lane said.
"He violated numerous elements of HP's Standards of Business Conduct, and he demonstrated a serious lack of integrity and judgement. The board was unanimous in its decision that he must go, including the seven directors Hurd recruited to the board."
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