Chinese manufacturers have a reputation for cutting corners.
Speaking with CNBC's "Fast Money: Halftime Report" on Monday, Kase Capital's Whitney Tilson (who brought the Lumber Liquidators story to "60 Minutes") said he did not know "whether they're just stunningly naive and incompetent, going to China and hitting the low bid. You do that on any product in China, and you will get tainted products."
Tilson's opinion is shared by others.
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"[American companies need to] understand that the contract is viewed differently in Asia than in the U.S. We sign that and think that's the end, but in China the view is completely opposite," said Rosemary Coates, a consultant about Chinese manufacturing and author of "42 Rules for Sourcing and Manufacturing in China."
"They start cutting corners as soon as production begins," she said, explaining that Chinese suppliers can often be negotiated down to their break-even price, after which they will need to find post-contract strategies to increase their margins. "Any company can demand a low price, and then the Chinese manufacturer kind of does what they want."
Because of that trend in China and some other developing countries, Coates recommends that her clients—which she said included Lumber Liquidators in 2013—adopt a "trust but verify" strategy. In other words, companies should hire local auditors, make regular site visits, and conduct independent lab testing on Chinese-made projects.