World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. disclosed Friday that it is conducting and investigation into “alleged misconduct” by Vincent McMahon, its chairman and chief executive officer. Effective immediately, McMahon has stepped back from his responsibilities as CEO and chairman until the investigation is concluded. “I have pledged my complete cooperation to the investigation by the Special Committee, and I will do everything possible to support the investigation. I have also pledged to accept the findings and outcome of the investigation, whatever they are,” McMahon said. The Wall Street Journal reported that the investigation is related to a secret $3 million settlement McMahon paid to a departing employee with whom he allegedly had an affair, citing people familiar with the probe. The company appointed Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon as interim CEO and interim chairperson. The media and entertainment company is also investigating John Laurinaitis, head of talent relations. The stock, which edged up 0.2% in premarket trading, has soared 31.5% year to date through Thursday, while the S&P 500 has dropped 23.1%.

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