While Volkswagen could face up to $18 billion in fines for an emissions cheating scandal its stock was devalued $16.9 billion today.
It was the leading one-day slide since November 2009, and comes at a time the German automaker is facing challenges in other arena. The shares declined by 13 percent to 140.95 euros by 0207 EDT.
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The company’s former chairman Ferdinand Piech has resigned five montghs ago in a power struggle with Martin Winterkorn over strategy and the company had been balanced to shake off doubts in this area its leadership.
Then www.rawvehicle.com Friday a strongly worded accusation by the EPA named the company a shark by intentionally installing a device to trick emissions inspectors into passing its diesel cars.
The company has acknowledged the allegation, and its CEO has apologized saying it has no tolerance for law breaking.
Volkswagen is also facing diminishing sales in China, other operational issues, and its VW brand had already been struggling with profitability.
“This disaster is beyond all expectations,” said Ferdinand Dudenhoeffer, head of the Center of Automotive Research at the University of Duisburg-Essen to Business Insider.