John Ransom

Ask any entrepreneur you know and they’ll tell you that raising money is the hardest thing they have ever done. 

Sure there is a ton of money out in the world. That’s why prices for dot coms went way up. And despite the subsequent bust, it didn’t stop money from moving into real estate. And when real estate busted, it hasn’t stopped money from moving into metals, oil and other commodities with astonishing rapidity.

Despite a sluggish economy in the U.S. in the last decade, world GDP had roughly doubled in that time from $32 trillion in 2000 to $63 trillion in 2010 according to figures from the World Bank.

There’s no lack of money in the world. It’s just not flowing to U.S. businesses that need it.  That's why jobs are being created at such a sluggish pace.    

That’s because so much of the concern about financial regulation and transparency has failed to account for the fact that there is more money in the world today than ever before- and that investors need more places to put it, not fewer.

We need more banks, not fewer. We need more public companies, not fewer. We need more insurance companies, not fewer.

That’s why it’s time to repeal Sarbanes-Oxley, Dodd-Frank and look at all the various financial acts since the repeal of Glass-Stegall.

Let’s start with Sarbanes-Oxley.

Sarbanes-Oxley was passed in response to frauds committed at public companies WorldCom and Enron. The act concentrated on making sure companies retained corporate records, toughened penalties for accounting fraud and improved transparency for investors. However, like most knee-jerk legislation, it contained provisions that were emotional, and revenge seeking rather than in the best interests of the public at large.

One such provision made executives, especially CFOs and CEOs personally responsible for the financial reports of their companies. In essence, it stripped away the corporate veil that is supposed to protect individuals who run companies who make wrong, but well-meant decisions. Instead it said that officers and directors were personally liable for fraud committed by others, whether the officers and directors knew of the fraud or not.

John Ransom

John Ransom’s writings on politics and finance have appeared in the Los Angeles Business Journal, the Colorado Statesman, Pajamas Media and Registered Rep Magazine amongst others. Until 9/11, Ransom worked primarily in finance as an investment executive for NYSE member firm Raymond James and Associates, JW Charles and as a new business development executive at Mutual Service Corporation. He lives in San Diego. You can follow him on twitter @bamransom.

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