Scandal Of Enron Scandal

1187 Words 5 Pages
Two years ago I was in the best place in the world. I was just about to graduate from Harvard with my Bachelor’s in Accounting and I just landed a job with one of the biggest company’s in Houston, ENRON. I had no real world accounting experience, and yet here I was a small town Louisiana girl, landing this dream job. I couldn’t believe it; my luck had finally turned the corner … or so I thought. Here we are two years later and I am still unemployed and am criticizing myself for not doing more to stop one of the biggest scandal’s in US History.
ENRON HISTORY … This company started in July of 1985 through the merger of Houston Natural Gas and Omaha-based InterNorth. Over the next 15 years, it quickly grew into the No. 7 company on the Fortune
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On December 2nd, Enron filed for bankruptcy. But that wasn’t the beginning of the scandal. The beginning came in November of 1997 when Enron bought out one of the partner’s stakes in a company called JEDI and then turned around and sold the stake to a firm Enron created called CHEWCO. The make matters worse CHEWCO was run by Enron officers. This was the beginning of five years of complex transactions that enabled Enron to hide debts (Behind the Enron Scandal). Debts that employees like myself knew weren’t right. Debts that if hidden in any other company would get you canned quickly. However, we were praised and rewarded for it. The world started to catch on to what was going on within the walls of Enron and in February of 2001, FORTUNE magazine did a story that called us “a largely impenetrable company that is piling on debt while keeping Wall Street in the dark” (Behind the Enron Scandal). The accounting department had no idea how much longer these hidden debts could go on. And in October, 2000 we got our answer … we had to report a third-quarter loss of $618 million (Behind the Enron Scandal). Keep in mind, this was the first loss we ever reported. And in November, 2001 the company admitted to various accounting errors which inflated income by $586 million since 1997. (Behind the Enron Scandal). It was only a matter …show more content…
I have gone back to school to learn about the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX), passed last year. This act sets new standards for public accounting firms, corporate management, and corporate boards of directors. It is considered to be the most comprehensive reform of business practices since Franklin D Roosevelt was President and passed the New Deal (Peavler). It is thought that the scandal with my former employer Enron was the catalyst for this new legislation. I figure if there is any chance of being hired in accounting again, I am going to need to relearn all the laws and regulations. I am going to need to become a more ethical person and learn to stand up for what I believe in. I know that I can no longer play the game. I just read in the New York Times that this scandal “highlighted a weakness in the system that exists to encourage companies to fairly describe their financial health; when accounting rules are written very specifically, clever accountants find ways to get around them.” And that even some of the accountants who have been “extremely critical of Enron’s accounting, now say that accounting rules give at least a veneer of acceptability to some of the most widely questioned Enron accounting practices” (Norris). So maybe there is still hope for me out there to find a new employer. But I know it hasn’t been an easy road. And I know that I have to continue to learn and

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