Sarbanes-Oxley The cost of compliance

Now that many US firms have implemented the new Sarbanes-Oxley regulations on corporate governance, boardrooms are assessing just how much the exercise has cost. The figures don’t make for easy reading, as Saskia Scholtes reports

Nearly three years after the Sarbanes-Oxley Act heralded widespread reforms to financial practices and corporate governance regulation, debate over the legislation’s costs and benefits continues between corporations, auditors, regulators and investors alike. But in recent months, as deadlines for Sarbanes-Oxley compliance have passed for corporate America’s largest companies and the reforms’ initial results have finally become measurable, the debate has moved on to a new phase.

One of the most

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