Enron, The Natural Gas Provider Essay

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Enron, the natural gas provider turned trader of natural gas commodities and in 1994, electric, was once touted as the seventh largest company in America. Kenneth Lay, founder, began changing Enron from just a provider into a financial energy powerhouse. Lay took advantage of the dot-com boom of the late 1990’s by creating Enron Online, an internet trading platform. Internet stocks were valued at astronomical prices and were all the rage on wall street, who accepted the increasing prices as normal (Investopedia). On December 2, 2001 Enron declared chapter 11 bankruptcy, resulting in the loss of twenty thousand jobs and billions of investor and creditor dollars. Enron, once designated as "America 's Most Innovative Company" by Fortune for six years consecutively, enacted massive financial fraud at the fault of its top level executives: Kenneth Lay, Jeffery Skilling, and Andrew Fastow.
A question asked by Bethany McLean, a reporter for Fortune Magazine, in 2001 was “how does Enron make its money?” (Mclean) This, a quite straightforward question, was something that the executives refused to answer, citing confidentiality. Jeffery Skilling agreed to join Enron as CEO on the condition that the use of use mark-to-marketing (MTM) accounting would be allowed. Arthur Andersen, the companies accounting firm, and the SEC signed off on it, and Skilling joined the company in 1990 (Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room). This type of accounting values an asset based on its current market
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