Washington (April 18, 2002) -- By a margin of 49-12, the House Financial Services Committee has approved legislation designed to improve oversight of the accounting profession and rules governing corporate disclosure.

The bill, drawn up by committee chairman Michael G. Oxley, R-Ohio, essentially gives the Securities and Exchange Commission sweeping authority to establish its previously proposed five-member "Public Accountability Board" to oversee the accounting profession. The board would be comprised primarily of people outside the profession.

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