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Public Policy Analysis - SARBANE OXLEY - Essay Example

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Public Policy Analysis - SARBANE OXLEY (Name) (University) Introduction The Sarbanes-Oxley Act was a legislation that was brought into force on July 30, 2002. It was legitimately named Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002. This law that was very vital in streamlining the environment for doing business…
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Download file to see previous pages Oxley. Over the years, the act has managed to establish a myriad of deadlines for its compliance. This act was adopted mainly to uplift the standards in corporate governance, analysis of securities and performance of audit work. According to Cohen, Dey & Lys (2007), before the introduction of this policy there were numerous Securities and Exchange Commission violations, gross lack of corporate quality control and ethical behavior in companies resulting in many corporate scandals and filing of criminal actions against corporations, shareholders, company directors, and finally company officers. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act came into effect in the wake of some of the nations enormous financial scandals. The Act is believed to initiate most of the dramatic changes to the federal laws since 1930s. It further prescribes punishment for violators of the Act ranging from prison sentences to multimillion-dollar penalties. The main idea that the editors of this act had in mind was to protect investors by improving the accuracy and reliability of corporate disclosures made pursuant to the securities laws. Over the years, the government of the United States of America has adopted this policy and many security policies have been drafted in reference to this act. SOX applies to all public companies in the United States not excluding international companies that have registered equity or debt securities with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the accounting firms that provide auditing services to them. According to Bartlett and Richard the Sarbanes-Oxley Act has created new standards for corporate accountability and also new penalties for acts of incompliance. It has changed how corporate boards, executives and corporate auditors interact with each other. In addition, it also removes the common excuse of claiming that one was not aware of a mistake when he or she made it on matters pertaining to finances. This mainly involves the CEOs and CFOs, as it holds them accountable for the accuracy and errors of financial statements (DMPL). The Act specifies new financial reporting responsibilities and these include adhering to new internal controls and procedures formulated to ensure that financial records are valid. The Act makes it a federal crime to for a company to force or manipulate an auditor into signing off incorrect financial statements thus preventing company directors and officers from obtaining personal benefits from dubious financial statements. Moreover, the Act stipulates that the board of directors in almost all public companies should have an audit committee. The committee is tasked to appoint, regulate, inspect and exercise control over the company’s auditing firm. As result the auditors are to directly report to the audit committee. Rationale for public policy-Market failure This highlights how the concept of market failure applies to ethical corporate governance to give an insight in corporate ethics’ authenticity in the modern corporation and the probability of the Sarbanes-Oxley achieving its desired results. When large companies like Enron, WorldCom and Tyco just to name a few were struck with enormous cases of corporate fraud, the necessity to find for an amicable solution was very vital. This is because millions of dollars were embezzled by the CEOs and CFOs through customized balance sheets. Companies incurred considerable loss of profits ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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