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Chapter 9. Goosing, Stuffing, and Faking: Tricks of the Trade to Drive Reven...

Chapter 9. Goosing, Stuffing, and Faking: Tricks of the Trade to Drive Revenue Up and Costs Down

“In the corporate world, some things aren’t exactly black and white when it comes to accounting procedures.”

—President George W. Bush at a news conference on July 8, 2002, a day before announcing a crackdown on corporate criminals and as he defended his own past business dealings

Now let’s look at the truly creative. Playing around with a few asset sales, some pension gains, or “cookie jar” reserves to prop up earnings is one thing. But this is small time crookery to the real manipulators and deceivers. They prefer to simply scratch a few billion dollars from one column and put the money in another, to stop the computer clocks so that a late order can have a timestamp before the end of a quarter and be counted in that period’s revenue, or to send trucks of goods to their own warehouses and declare them sold. Some prefer faking invoices, forging colleagues’ signatures, or adding figures ahead of or after the original numbers in an email so that a contract appears to have the value of millions rather than thousands of dollars. All this has happened at publicly traded companies in recent years as the desperate and greedy not only cook the books but dice and stir fry them, too. Sadly, such behavior has been far from limited to penny stock companies.


  

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