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Accounting For Fun and Profit by Lawrence A. Weiss

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APPENDIX 2A

If the Auditors Sign Off, Does that Make It Okay?

Originally published on HBR.org Tuesday May 1, 2012, by Lawrence Weiss https://hbr.org/2012/05/if-the-auditors-sign-off-on-it

Andrew Fastow, the former chief financial officer of Enron, recently completed a six-year prison sentence for his part in the scandalous deception that hid Enron’s financial troubles from investors. After I was quoted late last year in an article on the 10th anniversary of the Enron debacle, Fastow contacted me and offered to speak to the Financial Statement Accounting class I teach at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.

Last month, Fastow made good on his offer. Why did he commit fraud? Why did a bright, aspiring, stereotypical MBA cross ...

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