One Year Later: Execs Less Favorable Towards Sarbanes-Oxley

A survey released by PricewaterhouseCoopers this week indicates that senior executives are less favorable towards Sarbanes-Oxley today than they were in October of last year.

The group of executives from multinational companies participated in PwC's Management Barometer survey last year and again this summer, and the numbers of "favorable" ratings are falling - 30% "favorable" towards Sarbanes-Oxley now, versus 42% favorable last fall.

"Sarbanes-Oxley has proven to be far more complex and has required companies to make many more changes in control and compliance than executives originally thought, said Ellen Masterson, global leader of audit methodology for PricewaterhouseCoopers. "Consequently, more business leaders are now uncertain that their company is doing everything it should to be in compliance."

Other results of the PwC survey include:

  • Two-thirds are confident that their entire company is in compliance with Sarbanes-Oxley - down from 82% last fall.

  • Twice as many executives now feel that compliance with the Act will be a costly burden versus in October.

  • 27% feel "much higher" long-term costs are expected versus 12% last year.

  • Overall, 85% of senior executives are concerned about the cost of compliance.

  • A greater percentage of executives now have found it necessary to implement changes in control and compliance than originally envisioned.

  • More also perceive an increased risk for their audit committee, CEO, CFO, and other executives providing sub-certifications.

View full results of the PwC survey.

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