Former Federal Reserve Board Chairman Paul Volcker, leader of the independent oversight board created to help Andersen find its way through its struggles since the Enron situation came to light, announced this weekend that he can do no more for Andersen and is giving up his effort to save and reform the firm.
One of Mr. Volcker's requirements for staying on with the Andersen reorganization was that a settlement be reached with the Department of Justice, thus preventing the firm from having to endure the trial on obstruction of justice charges. As it now appears that the trial will go on as scheduled, Mr. Volcker indicated he had no choice but to abandon his efforts to work with the firm.
Mr. Volcker plans to remain with the oversight board because he feels there is still much he can do to help the accounting profession. "The independent oversight board is in suspension as far as Andersen is concerned, but it wants to stay together to work on reform of the accounting industry," said Mr. Volcker.