Which of the following actions would be most likely to reduce conflicts of interest between stockholders and bondholders?
a.If a lower level person in a firm does something illegal, like “”cooking the books”” to understate costs and thereby artificially increase profits because he or she was ordered to do so by a superior, the lower level person cannot be prosecuted but the superior can be prosecuted.
b.There are many types of unethical business behavior. One example is where executives provide information that they know is incorrect to outsiders. It is illegal to provide such information to federally regulated banks, but it is not illegal to provide it to stockholders because they are the owners of the firm.
c. The bankruptcy of Enron Corporation, and the fraud committed by some of its officers, was much discussed, but it did not lead to any important changes in business practices.
d. If someone deliberately understates costs and thereby causes reported profits to increase, then this can cause the price of the stock to rise above its intrinsic value. The stock will probably fall in the future. Both those who participated in the fraud and the firm itself can be prosecuted.
e. Ethical behavior is not influenced by training and auditing procedures. People are either ethical or they are not, and this is what determines ethical behavior in business