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    Ethical Decision Making: Assessing Financial Support

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    Read the "Decision Point" section on page 425 (See Below) of the text (When Does Financial Support Become a Kickback). There are three bulleted questions at the end of the short excerpt. Answer all questions listed. Remember to restate the question, and then give your reply. I include the three questions I would like answered please.
    Consider the case of what is referred to as "soft money" within the securities industry. According to critics, a common practice in the securities industry amounts to little more than institutionalized kickbacks. "Soft money" payments occur when financial advisors receive payments from a brokerage firm to pay for research and analyst services that, in theory, should be used to benefit the clients of those advisors. Such payments can benefit clients if the advisor uses them to improve the advice offered to the client. Conflicts of interest can arise when the money is used for the personal benefit of the advisor. In 1998, the Securities and Exchange Commission released a report that showed extensive abuse of soft money. Examples included payments used for office rent and equipment, personal travel and vacations, memberships at private clubs, and automobile expenses. If you
    learned that your financial advisor received such benefits from a brokerage, could you continue to trust the financial advisor's integrity or professional judgement?

    1. What facts do you need to know to better judge this situation?

    2. What values are at stake in this situation? Who gets harmed if a financial advisor accepts payments from a brokerage? What are the consequences?

    3. For whom does a financial advisor work? To whom does she have a professional duty? What are the sources of these obligations?

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    Solution Preview

    Step 1

    1. What facts do you need to know to better judge this situation?

    You should say that the facts that I need to know to better judge this situation is the exact purpose of the payments being made by the brokers and the actual purpose for which these funds are used. For example, if the fund is actually paid to analysts to spend additional time on research and the analysts actually spend the additional time contracted for on research and use the money for personal use, the advisor's integrity is not compromised. However, instead if the financial advisor does not put in the time and effort required to do the research then the financial ...

    Solution Summary

    Morality in business is discussed step-by-step in this solution. The response also has the sources used.