Six Degrees of Separation

Lee, Shelley A.
August 2002
Journal of Financial Planning;Aug2002, Vol. 15 Issue 8, p17
Academic Journal
This article focuses on legislative proposals concerning financial planning in the U.S. supported by the Financial Planning Association (FPA). In late June 2002, the FPA called on the U.S. Congress to approve two legislative proposals that, according to FPA president Bob Barry, will help restore investor confidence. The FPA supports passage of a Senate bill, the Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002, that goes significantly further than a recent Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) proposal to establish an independent accounting oversight body and a House proposal supported by the accounting industry. The bill according to Barry, strengthens the independence of the accounting oversight body and restricts the consulting services accountants may offer that are in conflict with the audits. The second bill that FPA supports would authorize an increase in the SEC's budget by 77 percent and direct significant resources from that increase to accounting and Wall Street enforcement. Financial planners rely implicitly on the accuracy of financial statements reviews by certified public accounting firms. Barry also stated that the even more reason to ensure accurate financials is the tendency by many employees to continue to overconcentrate their 401(k)s in company stock and not diversify, even after Enron.


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