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Five Years of SOX, and Ethical Pitfalls Remain

Patricia Harned | August 14, 2007

Last month’s fifth anniversary of the landmark Sarbanes-Oxley Act spurred a flurry of discussion in both business and political circles about that legislation’s effect on business practices, as well as its success in curtailing the kinds of abuses that brought down Enron, WorldCom, and other giants early in this decade.

Much of the discussion drew on the views of senior political and regulatory officials in Washington, D.C., and senior corporate executives. An Aug. 7 Compliance Week story (“Five Years on, Companies Still Unenthused by SOX”) noted that, when the policy elite came together to discuss SOX at a Washington luncheon in July, it was clear that the law “is still seen more favorably by investors and regulators than by companies caught up in the compliance exercise.” There was much talk of the reporting burden now imposed on...

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