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QUALCOMM, Inc. : N.Y. Comptroller : Qualcomm to Post Political Donations Online

02/22/2013 | 09:07am US/Eastern
   By Melodie Warner 
 

Qualcomm Inc. (QCOM) agreed to implement a revised political-spending disclosure policy to avoid a lawsuit filed by the New York State Common Retirement Fund.

New York's public pension fund filed a lawsuit last month in an unusual effort to force the wireless-technology company to disclose what it spends on political causes.

The lawsuit, which legal experts say could have a significant impact on corporate political giving, alleged Qualcomm has declined to disclose its political donations, despite a formal request by the pension fund and other institutional investors.

Under the updated policy, Qualcomm will post online the company's contributions to political candidates, political parties, trade associations, Section 501(c)(4) organizations and contributions to influence ballot measures, according to a joint release from New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli's office.

"Qualcomm agrees with the New York State Common Retirement Fund that increased transparency for election-related activities by corporations is very beneficial," said Chief Executive and Chairman Paul E. Jacobs.

The New York public pension fund is the third-largest such fund in the U.S., with more than $150 billion in assets under management. The fund said it owns $378 million of Qualcomm stock, making it Qualcomm's biggest public-pension investor.

The San Diego chip maker reported last month its fiscal first-quarter profit surged 36%, as brisk demand from smartphone manufacturers helped drive revenue up 29%.

Shares closed Thursday at $64.82 and were inactive premarket. The stock has risen 3.6% over the past year.

-Dan Strumpf contributed to this report.

Write to Melodie Warner at melodie.warner@dowjones.com

Subscribe to WSJ: http://online.wsj.com?mod=djnwires

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