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Volume 2 Number 11 November 2016

Accounting Manipulation Practices in Financial Statements: An Experience of an Asian Economy


Authors: Madan Lal Bhasin
Pages: 199-214
Abstract
Accounting scandals and frauds are perennial; they have occurred in all eras, in all countries and affected millions of corporations. Unfortunately, there are few loopholes in accounting and auditing standards, which provide leeway and thus motivate accounting professionals to use aggressively manipulation practices. In fact, accounting manipulation (AM) involves the intentional cooking-up of financial records towards a pre-determined target. Every company indeed maneuvers the numbers, to a certain extent, as formally reported in its financial statements (FS) to achieve budgetary targets and generously reward senior managers. From Enron, WorldCom to Satyam, it appeared that window-dressing leading to AM is a serious problem that is increasing both in its frequency and severity, which undermines the integrity of financial reports and eroded investors’ confidence. The responsibility of preventing, detecting and investigating financial frauds rests squarely on Board of Directors and they should adopt preventive steps. Despite the raft of CG, and financial disclosure reforms, corporate accounting still remains murky and companies continue to find ways to play ‘hide-and-seek’ game with the system. Satyam computers were once the crown jewel of Indian IT-industry but were brought to the ground by its founders in 2009 as a result of financial manipulations in FS. The present study provides a snapshot of how Mr. Raju (CEO and Chairman) mastermind this maze of AM practices? Undoubtedly, Satyam scam is illegal and unethical in which computers were cleverly used to manipulate account books by creating fake invoices, inflating revenues, falsifying the cash and bank balances, showing non-existent interest on fixed deposits, showing ghost employees, and so on. Satyam fraud has shattered the dreams of investors, shocked the government and regulators and led to questioning of the accounting practices of auditors and CG norms in India. Finally, we recommend that “All types of AM practices should be legally recognized as a serious crime, and accounting bodies, law courts and regulatory authorities must adopt exemplary punitive measures to prevent such unethical practices.”



Zero-based Budgeting System: Is Budgeting System the Determinant of Budget Implementation in Nigeria?


Authors: Abuh Adah
Pages: 192-198
Abstract
Budget is a financial and non-financial framework in terms of cash flows that guides governments, private organizations and individuals in achieving their desired objectives in a particular period if it is properly, adequately and realistically prepared. The long standing and familiar incremental budget has been faulted by various stakeholders hence, the contemplation for an alternative system known as zero-based budgeting (ZBB). The first objective of this study is to find out whether or not the theoretical benefits accruable to ZBB can motivate the governments’ ministries, departments and agencies to adopt and implement the proposed new system? The second objective is to determine whether or not the budgeting system has any relationship with budget implementation. Questionnaire was used in collecting data from the budget stakeholders. Descriptive statistics and simple regression were adopted in analyzing the data. It is established that the theoretical benefits accruable to ZBB can influence the adoption and implementation of the proposed ZBB. It is also revealed that the proposed budgeting system has a strong relationship with implementation. The study recommends that, despite the support for the ZBB, the current incremental budgeting system would have to be reviewed for reference into adopting and implementing the ZBB since it will be the basis for the new system. It is also recommended that the coming into operation of the new system should be a gradual process in the form of test running it to address the acknowledged challenges in the proposed system before it can be fully implemented. In addition, there should be seriousness in the whole exercise.