Cover

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Title Page

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Foreword

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pp. v-viii

Only a few short years ago, after the Asian financial crisis of 1997–98, Americans held out their systems of corporate governance and financial disclosure as models to be emulated by the rest of the world. Thomas Friedman, in his best-selling book The Lexus and the Olive Tree, cited these features of the U.S. economic system with approval. ...

Contents

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pp. ix-xii

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Chapter 1. The Crisis in Corporate Disclosure

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pp. 1-17

Only a few short years ago, the American system of corporate disclosure—the combination of accounting and auditing standards, the professionalism of auditors, and the rules and practices of corporate governance that are designed to ensure the timely dissemination of relevant and accurate corporate financial information—was championed as a model for the rest of the world. ...

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Chapter 2. What's Wrong--and Right--with Corporate Accounting and Auditing in the United States

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pp. 18-48

Criticism of corporate accounting is not new. Strident complaints about dishonest and deceptive accounting in the 1920s1 and the distress of the Great Depression led to the creation in 1933 of the Securities and Exchange Commission. The SEC was given the authority to prescribe, monitor, and enforce accounting rules that presumably would help investors make informed decisions. ...

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Chapter 3. Fixing Corporate Disclosure

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pp. 49-79

Many proposals for “fixing” the U.S. disclosure system have been offered, and as we discuss in this chapter, some have been enacted by Congress and signed into law by the president. But while policymakers deliberated, the market itself engaged in a lot of “self-correction.” Managers and directors of many companies began paying far more attention to disclosure, ...

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Chapter 4. Disclosure Challenges Ahead

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pp. 80-94

The continuing flow of accurate, relevant, and timely information is central to the functioning of capital markets. The accounting debacles of 2002 harshly reminded investors of this simple truth. When investors cannot trust the earnings figures companies publish, they fear buying stocks. ...

Appendix: What Are the Major Differences between GAAP and IFRS, and Why Do They Matter?

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pp. 95-104

Notes

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pp. 105-116

Contributors

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pp. 117-118

Index

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pp. 119-126