Friday, July 20, 2007

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act, also known as the Sarbox Act was enacted following the Enron scandal after many investors lost their money, key executives went to jail and a large "Big Five" accounting firm, Arthur Andersen, was forced to close down, resulting in today's "Big Four" accountancy firms. According to CPA News Today, the "Big Four" accounting firms are: Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG LLP and Price Waterhouse Coopers.

Meanwhile, after the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) required all publicly-traded companies to comply with the Sarbanes-Oxley accounting standards, certified public accountants (CPAs) are racking in big bucks due to the extra work. Fresh graduates from college enter the rapidly growing field with great haste. Many managerial consultants and attorneys begin to specialize in Sarbox compliance and regulation consulting.

However, the new Sarbox act is not just good for consulting professionals, it is beneficial to shareholders as well. Hopefully, no more outrageous and illegal greed from executives. Financial reporting standards are also more transparent for people to better understand public corporations. All in all the Sarbanes-Oxley Act is beneficial to the entire economy in terms of morals and money.