cooking the books

How to Spot Suspicious Quarterly Earnings

For many companies, meeting or beating quarterly earnings estimates matters more than anything else. All too often, the drive to perform bleeds into a temptation to cook the books. But astute investors can see behind the numbers to glimpse the truth. Here are a few of the major red flags.

Buffett's Blind Spot: David Sokol's Unethical History

David Sokol, once considered a likely successor to Warren Buffett as CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, resigned this week from Berkshire under a cloud of possible insider trading charges. But these recent ethical lapses are hardly the worst of Sokol's business transgressions.