By Jerry W Markham
This new reference via the writer of the significantly acclaimed A monetary background of the USA covers the aftermath of the Enron-era scandals and the intense monetary advancements in the course of the interval
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Additional resources for A Financial History of the United States: From Enron-Era Scandals to the Subprime Crisis
Enron and Its Aftermath 23 much relevance to the charges against Skilling and Lay, but it did suggest that Enron was being sloppily managed. Fastow was then called to the stand. He admitted he had been “very greedy,” that he had lost his “moral compass,” and that he had misled his wife into signing a false tax return that led to her imprisonment, even crying to emphasize the point. Fastow testified that Skilling and Lay had been informed of his accounting manipulations. Fastow stated that Skilling liked the idea of using the special-purpose entities called LJM1 and LJM2 to manipulate Enron’s accounts by selling underperforming assets and taking them off the Enron balance sheet.
Rice was the government’s principal witness, but he made a serious misstep when he wrongly testified that a film of Skilling talking up Enron had been shown to financial analysts. Skilling appeared at the trial to observe its proceedings before his own trial, but Vanessa Gilmore, the federal district court judge hearing the case, had him removed from the courtroom. In response to Rice’s testimony, the defendants testified that he was out of touch with Broadband’s business and that he did not understand the technology.
The government claimed that the transaction between Merrill Lynch and Enron was a sham used to allow Enron to book improperly $12 million in earnings that should have been reported as debt. In light of the billions of dollars in losses by Enron, and the massive accounting schemes used to inflate Enron’s earnings by billions of dollars, $12 million seemed like pocket change. The transaction, nevertheless, for some reason enraged the Enron Task Force, and it prosecuted the case with zeal far beyond its monetary value.