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    Auditors for Catalina Marketing Corp. Quit

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Independent auditors for Catalina Marketing Corp. quit after uncovering a series of questionable accounting moves, The St. Petersburg Times reports.

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Independent auditors for Catalina Marketing Corp. quit after uncovering a series of questionable accounting moves, The St. Petersburg Times reports.

    Catalina is best known for its devices that print instant coupons customized to each shopper at supermarkets.

    The company previously revealed accounting problems in its newer Health Resource unit that produces customized sales pitches for prescription medicines sold at drug stores.

    In addition to announcing the resignation of accounting firm Ernst & Young LLP, Catalina said it will notify the Securities and Exchange Commission today of "certain 'reportable events' identified" by the accountants.

    Other problems were cited by the company, including details pertaining to the timing of the company's accounting for revenues in the Catalina Health Resource and Catalina Manufacturer Services divisions; the treatment for certain noncash transactions in the Catalina Retail Services division; and the disclosure of segment information for financial reporting.

    Because of "revenue recognition" problems previously reported in the pharmacy operation, Catalina has yet to file its annual report with the SEC for the 2003 fiscal year that ended March 30 or its quarterly report for the first quarter of this year.

    The value of Catalina stock has dropped 26 percent since mid-June, closing Monday at $15.14, up 15 cents. The company, which has twice had to delay filing its annual report for 2003, has insisted that the overall financial health of its business has not been affected despite what it has described as an internal debate over when some of the revenues at its business units should be recognized.

    The company is reportedly interviewing other firms to take over for Ernst & Young.

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