Bradley Pharmaceuticals lost more than a quarter of its value on the New York Stock Exchange yesterday after the US company revealed that the US Securities and Exchange Commission had launched an informal inquiry into the company to determine whether it had broken federal securities laws.

Bradley said that SEC staff had requested certain information and documents, including those concerning revenue recognition and capitalisation of certain payments. The firm confirmed that it was cooperating with the request, and added that initial letters from the SEC stated that the inquiry “should not be construed as an indication… that any violation of the federal securities laws has occurred.”

In light of the ongoing SEC staff inquiry and a separate review to be conducted by a separate counsel retained by the company’s audit committee, Bradley says it will not be releasing its 2004 earnings at this time, as originally anticipated.