Ethics at Arthur Andersen Case Study by pepperpot

Ethics at Arthur Andersen
An overview of the ethical lapses of the Arthur Andersen accounting firm.
# 113936 | 888 words | 7 sources | APA | 2008 | PH
Published on May 20, 2009 in Business (Accounting) , Accounting (General) , Ethics (General)

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This paper discusses the fall of the Arthur Andersen accounting firm and the lessons that can be drawn from its demise. The paper explains that the problem at Arthur Anderson began because it served as the auditor of and consultant to Enron, causing a conflict of interest on many levels. The paper then highlights the lessons that can be learned from this event, namely, that arrogance and greed will lead nowhere and ethics should be the guiding principle in businesses and in daily lives.

What Went Wrong
Conflict of Interest

From the Paper:

"A day after Enron Corp. announced that the SEC was inquiring into the company's accounting, auditors at Arthur Andersen's Houston office started destroying thousands of documents and e-mail messages. The destruction, which apparently took place on from October 23 to November 9, 2001, was only the start. Investigators also found that Arthur Andersen approved transactions by Enron and its affiliates that contributed to Enron's collapse. It was also found that Andersen had repeatedly assured Enron management that its books were in order (Oppel & Eichenwald, 1).
"In June 2002, Andersen was found guilty of obstruction of justice in relation to impeding the Enron investigation (Eichenwald, 1). While Andersen still exists today, it's only a shell of what it used to be, with no more than 200 employees. It has also stayed away from auditing public companies, focusing more on litigation or pension issues (Glaten, 1)."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Brenkert, George. Corporate Integrity and Accountability. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications, 2004.
  • Eichenwald, K. (2002). Andersen Guilty in Effort to Block Inquiry on Enron. New York Times Online. Retrieved on 6 May 2008. <>
  • Glater, Jonathan (2006). Enron Trial Stirs Memory of Andersen. New York Times Online. Retrieved on 6 May 2008. <>
  • Marshall, Jeffrey. "CPAs as Consultants: Conflict of Interest? " United States Banker 1 Nov. 1991: 23. ABI/INFORM Global. ProQuest. Retrieved on 6 May. 2008 <>
  • McDonald, Michael.(2007). Ethics and Conflict of Interest. University of British Columbia W. Maurice Young Centre for Applied Ethics. Retrieved on 6 May 2008. <>

Cite this Case Study:

APA Format

Ethics at Arthur Andersen (2009, May 20) Retrieved August 21, 2017, from

MLA Format

"Ethics at Arthur Andersen" 20 May 2009. Web. 21 August. 2017. <>