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Bernard Lawrence Bernie Madoff - Assignment Example

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1. The illegal behavior associated with this scheme hurt thousands of investors worldwide. Bernard Madoff was running a Ponzi scheme which was advertised as a legitimate hedge fund investment. A Ponzi scheme can be defined as an investment fraud that involves the payment of purported returns to existing investors from funds contributed by new investors (Sec, 2001)…
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Bernard Lawrence Bernie Madoff
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Download file to see previous pages For years MR. Madoff complied with paying dividends to investors, but under false assumptions. The deception that was occurring was unethical behavior. The third type of illegal behavior associated with this scam was that Madoff’s company was not complying with the generally accepted accounting principles. Not complying with the general accepted accounting principles is a violation of the FASB and SEC mandates. 2. The scam that Bernie Madoff pulled off hurt a lot of different interest groups. Prior to the scandal exploding the hedge fund that Mr. Madoff was operating was an extremely attractive investment alternative for a lot of individual investors and organizations that were looking to gain a profit from the stock market. The hedge fund Mr. Madoff was able to maintain in the marketplace for over 20 years was a tremendous opportunity for a lot of investors. Some federal prosecutors believe that the fraudulent activity from Mr. Madoff began as early as the 1970’s. The total losses that this scheme caused investors exceeded $65 billion. The fund offered investors every year consistently double digits returns, which is unheard of on Wall Street for a prolonged period of time. The Ponzi scheme Madoff operated hurt a lot of interest groups. Some of the interest groups that were hurt by the scam included individual investors, non –profit organizations, governmental agencies, and private corporations. “If Madoff hadn’t faced $7 billion in redemptions, the Ponzi scheme might have never been discovered” (Lenzner, 2008). 3. There are several safeguards that could have prevented the Ponzi scheme that Madoff created from occurring. The first safeguard could have been obligating the company to reveal the exact composition of the portfolio of the fund to the individual investors on a recurrent basis. A second potential safeguard could have been establishing recurrent audits of the investment activity of the firm by independent auditors. A third safeguard that could have prevented this fraud could have been more involvement by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the matter. The SEC could have imposed more rigorous auditing standards to analyze the activities of the company. A fourth source of risk management prevention should have been the FBI. Most of the major investment firms on Wall Street believed that the returns offered by Madoff’s company were unrealistic in the long term. The FBI should have investigated this situation earlier. It seems ironic that it took the FBI and the SEC over 20 years to realize it was all a scam. 4. The grand majority of the funds of the hedge fund were invested by individual investors. From an investor’s standpoint the losses could have been prevented or at least minimized by investing only a small portion of their portfolio composition in this hedge fund. A second way investors could have prevented falling into this fraudulent scheme would have been by mandating that Madoff revealed the sources of the income of the hedge fund. Another way the investors could have prevented the scam was by asking the advice of registered broker prior to investing in the fund. 5. The scam that Mr. Madoff was involved ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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