What do we know now about ENRON, their financials, and current stock value?
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In California, we have an even more negative opinion of Enron because we were victims of their gauging. I can still remember trying to teach with rolling blackouts. Ugh! There is only so much studying outside you can do. Now we know that they watched the fires and said “burn, baby burn” because they knew they’d make more money.
Your question is obviously a prompt given you by your instructor. The key to understanding what you are being asked is that the verbs are in the past progressive tense (ongoing in the past up to a given time in the past). The final question of your assignment, "What do we know... [about] current stock value?" presents a bit of an anomaly because it is in the present tense, though offset by the qualifier "now."
What we know now about their current stock price is that there is none: there is no current stock price. Bloomsberg gives this comment on the ENRON ticker summary page:
Enron Creditors Recovery Corporation operates as a special purpose entity formed in order to reorganize and liquidate the remaining operations and assets.
Bloomberg has this to say abot Enron's current Opening trading price, current Volume of shares traded and current Bid price:
Open: -- Day's Range: -- Volume: 0 Bid: --
One further thing Bloomberg tells is that when Enron liquidated, it's earnings ended at $1.76 per share and that, at last reckoning, there were 743.90 shares still outstanding:
Earnings Per Share () (ttm) 1.7600
Shares Outstanding (M) 743.90
Finally, Enron's ticker symbol is identified as "Delisted":
Enron was typical of companies which hire very bright, talented individuals who were adept at creative accounting practices which made liabilities look like assets. They were so creative with such new things as "credit default swaps" that even the CPA's didn't understand. However, even the brightest minds cannot circumvent the simple laws of mathematics, particularly those of addition and subtraction. Sadly, many in the company's upper echelons knew the truth and began dumping stock even as they encouraged others to buy, to hide the truth. It is a classic example of the abuses of unregulated business.
Enron is no more. It was one of the great scandals of the finance world. In a sense it was a prelude of what was to come in 2008. After Enron, we say the bust of Worldcom (MCI) and then we say the finances firms in deep trouble in 2008. "Creative account" practices were to blame in many ways. Things have changed, but not so by much.
Many people were hurt by Enron, and not just the employees, but also who investedin Ernon, such as pension funds.
Enron engaged in deceptive accounting techniques which hid the fact that they were actually losing money when it looked like they were profitable. They went bankrupt and their employees and stockholder lost billions of dollars.
You could read this, a story about how journalists found the truth that auditors and accountants missed.
24 Days: How Two Wall Street Journal Reporters Uncovered the Lies that Destroyed Faith in Corporate America
by Rebecca Smith and John R. Emshwiller
The title seems a bit misleading, in the sense that the sinking of the Titanic made the world forget the sinking of the Arctic, wihich is totally like how the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers and AIS made the world forget Enron.
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