“Easy access to the capital markets by businesses organized as corporations helps make the corporation popular. However, the corporation also concentrates temptation, since very large sums of ‘the other guys’ money’ are involved. Prosecution of securities law violations during the last few years has revealed many episodes of complete abandonment by CEOs, CFOs, and other corporate officers of their duty of care toward shareholders. Public revulsion and harm to many individuals who trusted their brokers and the claims of company managers between 1999 and 2001 have led to unprecedented numbers of class action lawsuits against corporate officers and record civil damage awards to shareholders.These damage awards typically amount to only a tiny fraction of the money lost by an individual investor who joins such a lawsuit. The remedy usually doesn’t match the injury. Could more extensive government regulation have prevented the major corporate frauds and terrible personal retirement investment losses of the last five years? Or, is risk of such episodes of corporate fraud simply part of the price we pay in exchange for the benefits of a free-market system? What specific new regulations, if any, would be most effective?(one to two pages)

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