By  on July 30, 2010

Many of American Apparel Inc.’s investors took the lead of Deloitte & Touche, the company’s accountant, and split Thursday.

Shares of the purveyor of brightly colored, domestically produced basics dropped 14.4 percent, or 26 cents, to $1.55 after American Apparel said late Wednesday that Deloitte had resigned as its auditor.

The accounting firm, which has already noted that American Apparel did not maintain effective internal control over its financial reporting last year, is looking for additional information to reevaluate the firm’s 2009 results.

American Apparel’s profits declined to $1.1 million last year from $14.1 million in 2008, according to the firm’s annual report in March.

“Deloitte advised the company that certain information has come to Deloitte’s attention, that if further investigated may materially impact the reliability of either its previously issued audit report or the underlying consolidated financial statements for the year ended Dec. 31, 2009,” said American Apparel in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The firm replaced Deloitte with Marcum, which had previously been its auditor.

Of the 172 stocks tracked by WWD, American Apparel turned in the worst showing on what was a relative downer of a day on Wall Street.

The S&P Retail Index slipped 0.7 percent, or 2.74 points, to 400.91, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.3 percent, or 30.72 points, to 10,467.16.

Stocks around the world painted a muddled picture as investors searched for a theme and worried over economic uncertainty that has gnawed away at portfolios.

Asian traders pushed the Nikkei 225 down 0.6 percent to 9,696.02 in Tokyo as the Hang Seng Index remained basically flat at 21,093.82 in Hong Kong.

The DAX slipped 0.7 percent to 6,134.70 in Frankfurt as the CAC 40 receded 0.5 percent to 3,651.91 in Paris and the FTSE 100 dropped 0.1 percent to 5,313.95 in London.

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