Magazine

Table: Harsher Penalties--to Start With


During the week ended Feb. 15, BusinessWeek and Financial Executives International--a professional organization of financial managers--surveyed 3,222 members about post-Enron auditing reforms. Some 355 responded. Here are highlights from the poll:

How do you feel about these potential reforms:

Government-mandated auditor rotation?

EXTREMELY HELPFUL 11%

SOMEWHAT HELPFUL 12%

MODERATELY HELPFUL 18%

NOT VERY HELPFUL 27%

NOT AT ALL HELPFUL 32%

Legislation or regulation barring corporations from hiring their audit firms to do nonaudit and nontax-related consulting?

EXTREMELY HELPFUL 18%

SOMEWHAT HELPFUL 24%

MODERATELY HELPFUL 23%

NOT VERY HELPFUL 24%

NOT AT ALL HELPFUL 11%

Creation of a new regulator, independent of the Big Five and the AICPA, to oversee audit quality assurance and discipline?

EXTREMELY HELPFUL 17%

SOMEWHAT HELPFUL 18%

MODERATELY HELPFUL 20%

NOT VERY HELPFUL 19%

NOT AT ALL HELPFUL 25%

Harsher penalties for executives, directors, and auditors who fail to properly discharge their responsibilities?

EXTREMELY HELPFUL 49%

SOMEWHAT HELPFUL 23%

MODERATELY HELPFUL 16%

NOT VERY HELPFUL 6%

NOT AT ALL HELPFUL 6%

A two- to five-year waiting period during which time auditors may not accept senior positions with audit clients?

EXTREMELY HELPFUL 19%

SOMEWHAT HELPFUL 19%

MODERATELY HELPFUL 20%

NOT VERY HELPFUL 18%

NOT AT ALL HELPFUL 24%

Increased disclosure of the major risks and assumptions built into financial statements, as proposed by the SEC?

EXTREMELY HELPFUL 37%

SOMEWHAT HELPFUL 29%

MODERATELY HELPFUL 21%

NOT VERY HELPFUL 7%

NOT AT ALL HELPFUL 6%


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