The New Millennium is not even 1% completed

and our economic resources are almost depleted

because the fearful have almost stampeded

in the withdrawal of all of their funds.

But many believe that there is a good reason

for a play it safe kind of season

since Madoff and others

have stolen money by the tons.

 

What do you think of the idea of a group of investors and interested observers

exploring the possibility of forming a non-profit financial watch-dog group. The

purpose of the organization would be to select a group of independent financial

auditors who would be charged with the task of thoroughly auditing the books of

selected and willing public companies.

 

The first 100 companies that would be asked to voluntarily submit to the audit

would be the Dow 30, the top 50 companies from the S&P 500 and the top 20

Nasdaq corporations. These would be known as the American Millennium Group

AMG: because the list will hopefully grow to at least 1000. 

 

For companies that pass the audit Congress would be asked to set up a new Federal

Agency to insure shareholders for up to 80% of their original investment in return

for the payment of an appropriate (actuarially determined) premium. In addition

the AMG shareholders would pay only half of the going income tax rates on

dividends and capital gains.  But in order to be eligible to participate in this program

new and existing shareholders would have to agree to keep their money invested in

the program for at least 3 years or pay a substantial penalty for early withdrawal.

 

The basic purpose of the AMG program would be restore the status of the securities

market as a forum for long term investors. Let the speculators go elsewhere.  The

managements of  the AMG member companies would also obtain some breathing

room. They would be more free from the pressure of trying to meet quarterly street

expectations and also from the always present temptation to cheat: as a means of

reaching those expectations.

 

Once such a program gets started companies will be vying to get in.  But no company will

be allowed to participate unless the Chairman,  CEO and other front office executives  (voluntarily)  relinquish all rights to due process in the event of civil litigation in which investors

attempt to recover investments lost due to negligence.  In other words the executives would

have to agree that  if a Madoff type scandal broke,  then all of their assets would be immediately frozen until things could be sorted out.  The CEO's and the other officers should expect to be

paid the market rate in compensation for jobs with such high levels of responsibility and that require such substantial sacrifices of legal due process.

 

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