AMD investors spooked by accountant's exit

AMD shares fell like a free falling team of parachuting elephants yesterday as investors reacted to the departure of the chipmaker’s chief financial officer.

One analyst referred to Thomas Seifert as “The Rock” for the chip maker’s investors, presumably because after wrestling with the numbers he is looking for a more glamorous career in Hollywood.

AMD’s stock was last trading down 12 percent shortly after the company said Seifert had cleaned out his desk.

Seifert has stepped down “to pursue other opportunities,” and AMD said that his exit was “not based on any disagreement over the company’s accounting principles or practices, or financial statement disclosures”.

Apparently he wants to be a CEO somewhere. He got a taste for the job when he was the interim chief executive officer after the sudden departure of ex-CEO Dirk Meyer last year. He was on the short list for candidates for permanent CEO, but the AMD board chose Lenovo executive Rory Read in August 2011.

Devinder Kumar, AMD’s corporate controller, has been named interim CFO while the company conducts a search for a replacement.

According to MarketWatch, investor expectations for AMD were pretty low and the resignation ought to spook some.