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April 27, 2010
The purpose of ethics in business is to individuals to abide by a code of conduct that facilitates, if not encourages, public confidence in their products and services. In the accounting field, the AICPA maintains and enforces a code of professional conduct for public accountants. Professional accounting organizations recognize the accounting profession's responsibility to provide ethical guidelines to its members. The AICPA's first principle of professional conduct states: "In carrying out their responsibilities as professionals, members should exercise sensitive professional and moral judgments in all their activities." A profession is formed on the basis of a generally accepted body of knowledge, a widely recognized standard of attainment, and an enforceable code of ethics. A code of ethics is a crucial part in forming a professional.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is the United States governing body which has primary responsibility for overseeing the regulation of the securities industry.
The SEC has five Commissioners who are appointed by the President of the United States with the advice and consent of the United States Senate. Their terms last five years and are staggered so that one Commissioner's term ends on June 5 of each year. To ensure that the SEC remains non-partisan, no more than three Commissioners may belong to the same political party. The President also designates one of the Commissioners as Chairman, the SEC's top executive. The Office of the Chief Accountant is responsible for establishing and enforcing accounting and auditing policy to enhance the transparency and relevancy of financial reporting, and for improving the professional performance of public company auditors in order to ensure that financial statements used for investment decisions are presented fairly and have credibility. To accomplish OCA's stated mission, the...