Managing the Risks of Corporate Fraud: The Evidence from Hong Kong and Singapore
Since the Asian financial crisis of 1997, Hong Kong and Singapore have implemented reforms that promote independence and monitoring competency of the boards of directors of their listed companies. However, with the advent of the financial crisis of 2007/2008, a wave of fraud cases prompts the question as to the effectiveness of these reforms. In this seminar, Associate Professor Wan of Singapore Management University will report on the findings from an analysis of 62 listed companies that suggest that fraudulent companies tend to combine the roles of chairman and chief executive officer and have fewer non-accounting finance experts. Otherwise, there are no material differences in the other corporate governance characteristics. The reasons for the limited role of independent directors in preventing fraud are due to the low threat of enforcement actions and their incentives to side with controlling shareholders. Thus, the results suggest that the high expectations of independent directors are only partially fulfilled.
Associate Professor Wai Yee Wan, Singapore Management University
Associate Professor Wai Yee Wan
Singapore Management University
Wan Wai Yee is Associate Professor and Lee Kong Chian Fellow in the School of Law at the Singapore Management University. She has held the positions of Associate Dean and Academic Director, Office of Provost and Deputy President, and Deputy Director of the Centre for CrossBorder Commercial Law in Asia. She graduated with an LLB (First Class Honours) from the National University of Singapore in 1996. She also holds a BCL from the University of Oxford, where she was in residence at St Edmund Hall in 1996/97. After obtaining her BCL, she joined the Singapore Legal Service and served as a Justices’ Law Clerk, Assistant Registrar and Deputy Public Prosecutor. Immediately prior to joining academia in December 2005, she was a partner at Allen & Gledhill, Financial Services Department, where she practised in the areas of mergers and acquisitions as well as equity capital markets. Her main areas of research are in corporate and securities regulation.