James Park on "The Valuation Treadmill"

James Park on \

Wednesday, September 14, 2022 | 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM

UCLA Law Professor James Park, author of The Valuation Treadmill: How Securities Fraud Threatens the Integrity of Public Companies, discusses the history of securities fraud regulation from the 1960s until the present.

Public companies now face constant pressure to meet investor expectations. The typical public company must continually deliver strong short-term performance every quarter to maintain its stock price. This valuation treadmill creates incentives for corporations to deceive investors. Published 20 years after the passage of Sarbanes-Oxley, which requires all public companies to invest in measures to ensure the accuracy of their disclosures, The Valuation Treadmill shows how securities fraud became a major regulatory concern. Drawing on case studies of paradigmatic securities enforcement actions involving Xerox, Penn Central, Apple, Enron, Citigroup and General Electric, the book argues that corporate securities fraud emerged as investors increasingly valued companies based on their future performance. Corporations now have an incentive to issue unrealistically optimistic disclosure to convince markets that their success will continue. Securities regulation must do more to protect the integrity of public companies from the pressure of the valuation treadmill.

About the Author
James Park is Professor of Law at UCLA School of Law where he teaches securities regulation. Before becoming a law professor, he worked as an Assistant Attorney General in the Investor Protection Bureau of the New York Attorney General’s Office. He is a graduate of Yale Law School and Miami University (Ohio).

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