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Is Greenspan underpaid?; how Sarbanes-Oxley affects dual listings.

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  • Is Alan Greenspan underpaid? In a recent poll of 129 executives and employees of publicly traded companies by executive compensation firm Clark Consulting, 62 percent responded that the Federal Reserve chairman’s salary — $171,900 — is not enough.
  • Accountant and business advisers BDO Stoy Hayward report that in the wake of the passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act in the United States, consultancy projects in the United Kingdom have been dramatically reduced.

“The two widespread predictions following Sarbanes-Oxley were that the amount of consultancy work given to auditors would drop dramatically, whilst audit fees would increase,” said Gervase MacGregor, the BDO Stoy Hayward partner who undertook the research. U.K. companies with a dual listing in the U.S., continued MacGregor, referred 30 percent less consulting work (by value) to the Big Four accounting firms in fiscal years ending in 2002, compared with 2001.

Perhaps surprisingly, however, he adds that “statutory audit fees have only marginally increased by 3 percent — broadly in line with inflation.”

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