Document Type


First Faculty Advisor

Charles Cullinan

Second Faculty Advisor

David Beausejour


accounting; ethics; Enron


Bryant University

Rights Management



The Enron scandal caused companies and their Board of Directors to reconsider how they were utilizing their code of ethics, especially after the legislation of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002. Enron's Board of Directors provided the CFO, Andy Fastow, with a waiver of the code of ethics to negotiate with himself, while also on behalf of Enron. The issue with this waiver was that, at the time, investors were left in the dark because they did not need to be notified about any changes or exceptions made to the code of ethics. After learning about why codes of ethics and any changes to them needed to be disclosed, I looked at all the changes made to companies' codes of ethics over the last twelve years and classified them. I classified the types of changes into either a waiver, an amendment, a new code of ethics, or other. From the classified data, I was able to discover two main trends: most changes are made during the fourth quarter of the year, and the number of amendments has been decreasing while the number of new codes of ethics is increasing.

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Accounting Commons