It's not unusual to find tech journalist and author John Dvorak's work referenced here at IT Business Edge. The tech press is what we're about, after all. But for some reason, I never expected to reference it in a Sarbanes-Oxley blog.
But his June 16 Market Watch column is titled Repeal Sarbanes-Oxley. I had to find out why, of course.
Simply put, Dvorak argues that Sarbanes-Oxley is responsible for killing innovation in the tech sector and giving investors nothing new and fast-growing to bankroll. He says:
No CEO can handle going from high-flying and aggressive go-go growth to slamming on the brakes to become the CEO/personal auditor of the company fretting about ridiculous details.
And he disputes the idea that Sarbanes-Oxley was enacted to protect investors from fraud. The folks at Enron were, after all, "busted...using pre-Sarbanes mechanisms." Sarbox, he says, protects auditors and accountants by taking them out of the loop.
In the meantime, companies that would otherwise be traded publicly are staying private to avoid the overwhelming costs of compliance -- or going to London or other more "friendly" markets.
Dvorak's conclusion? "This stupid law has to go. Completely."