News digest: Immigration raids, women and private equity, Iowa disclosure study


Government cracks down on restaurant hiring. The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is cracking down on restaurants that rely on undocumented workers, Nation’s Restaurant News reported. Some say the government’s recent crackdown of undocumented workers at Chipotle Mexican Grill locations that caused the firing of hundreds of workers in Minnesota should serve as notice to other restaurant franchises that they could face fines of as much as $16,000 per undocumented worker.  “It’s a message to restaurants big and small that they need to take a hard look” at their hiring practices,” Michael Wildes, managing partner at Wildes & Weinberg P.C. in New York, told the trade publication. Since January 2010, some 3,200 businesses have received notices of inspection from the immigration department, the article said.

Gender bias might impact private investment. Until recently, female entrepreneurs unsuccessful efforts at securing venture capital and angel investments had been attributed to their involvement in industries that don t interest investors, Small Business Trends reported. But a new study by the University of Utah suggests gender bias might be involved. “Startups led by female founder/CEOs are evaluated as less attractive investments as compared to those led by male founder/CEOs,” the study said. The study also found compensation for women CEOs was 86 percent of that of male CEOs even when they were found to be identical, and the abilities and experience of women CEOs were judged more negatively even when identical to men’s.

Break the bad news first. The earlier a firm announces that it will not meet analysts earnings expectations, the less likely it is to face lawsuits from angry shareholders, according to a study by the University of Iowa that polled 423 firms. At the halfway point of the quarter, more than 55 percent of the bad news is revealed on average for non-sued firms, compared to less than 25 percent for sued firms, said the study co-author, Richard Mergenthaler, an accounting professor at the university Henry B. Tippie College of Business, in a release Monday. Releasing the information earlier also will signal to stockholders that the poorer performance is not indicative of management fraud, the release said.