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Motley Fool Global Gains / GGM: Global Gains Philosophy
|Subject: Re: Gang of Five China auditors charged||Date: 12/5/2012 12:05 PM|
|Author: TMFCogitarius||Number: 5141 of 5162|
Another POV, questioning both the timing and the potential fallout:
'The S.E.C.’s position is fair, but futile. Auditors say they can’t give up Chinese documents for fear of accidentally passing on state secrets. The power to release audit work performed in China resides with the securities regulator.
Besides, under China’s loose definitions, auditors don’t always know what is a secret and what isn’t. American and Chinese authorities have been in talks for at least five years on closer co-operation, but with little progress.
By escalating the issue to a 300-day court review, the S.E.C. may just prove that compromise is elusive. The agency is effectively asking Chinese auditors to flout local law, or China to cast off its preoccupation with state secrecy. Neither is plausible. Starting a fight as China prepares to hand over power to new leaders, who may wish to score easy political points by swatting away attacks on the country’s sovereignty, looks especially unwise.'
Now the cost of taking a stand is high. Were the S.E.C. to refuse to accept accounts audited by Chinese firms, it might leave even established Chinese companies with no choice but to delist.
A mass delisting is no longer far-fetched. It might even be welcomed in China, where executives and bankers talk misguidedly about the merits of companies “returning home”. State banks and wealth funds might be happy to help scoop up distressed stakes in companies like Baidu and Sina. As for the S.E.C., it would be left with the moral upper hand, a market free of Chinese accounting risk – and thousands of angry U.S. investors.'
I wonder, though, which 'angry investors' he's talking about -- the longs who got suckered in, or the shorts who may thus get shut out of some juicy targets?
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