Renault shares plummet after site searches confirmed

Renault’s shares were hammered on news that three of the company’s sites were probed as part of an investigation into emissions technology.

The BBC and others report that shares were down 22 per cent on the news of the search, which wiped 5 billion Euro off the car maker’s market capitalisation. However, share prices recovered to be down 10.5 per cent at the end of the day.

Union officials claimed the sites were searched last week, with this later confirmed by Renault.

The French government created an independent technical commission following Germany’s Volkswagen confessing last September to installing “defeat device” software in their diesel vehicles. The commission is testing 100 vehicles in circulation in France, with 25 of these made by Renault.

French energy minister Segolene Royal said there was no evidence of fraud from Renault.

"Shareholders and employees should be reassured," she said, according to Reuters.

However, preliminary tests on cars from Renault and other companies found these had exceeded emissions limits.

"It's hard to believe that VW would have been the only one to have rigged emissions testing," a Clairinvest fund manager said.

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