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Editing financial projections for better data: ethical or unethical?

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A coworker comes to you with the following problem:

"I provided my boss a projection of factory overhead using the high-low method. He was unhappy with the results and told me to do more work and not return until I had a lower cost estimate. My initial analysis was based on data points for the last 24 months. By dropping the three highest data points, I was able to get a lower cost."

Was what your coworker did unethical? Explain.

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Solution Preview

By dropping the three highest data points, the coworker was able to manipulate the results so that they would appear favorable. This is very unethical and unprofessional. Whenever an employee or manager manipulates financial results, financial data, or other information in order to ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses if the accounting problem presented is ethical or unethical, and suggests the appropriate course of action.