The HIH Collapse: A Costly Catalyst for Reform

Gregor Allan


This paper examines the corporate governance and audit law reforms wrought in the wake of recent corporate scandals such as the HIH collapse. It considers the cost of these reforms and, using HIH as a principle reference point, the likely benefits. In particular, it questions reforms in the areas of auditor independence and audit standards. Do the new independence requirements go far enough? Does audit practice regulation now go too far? Indeed, is the audit function inherently
susceptible to legislated sanction – or does this denigrate the very
essence of auditing as a profession?

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