The Sarbanes-Oxley Act was signed into law on July 30, 2002 by President Bush, and was approved by the House by a vote of 423-3 and by the Senate 99-0. Sarbanes-Oxley is considered the most significant change to federal securities laws in the United States since the New Deal. Officially titled the Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002, and commonly called SOX and Sarbox, it was named after sponsors Senator Paul Sarbanes (D-MD) and Representative Michael G. Oxley (R-OH) and came as result of a series of corporate financial scandals.
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act is designed to review dated legislative audit requirements to protect investors by improving the accuracy and reliability of corporate disclosures, covering issues such as establishing a public company accounting oversight board, corporate responsibility, auditor independence, and enhanced financial disclosure. The act's major provisions mention that we can name the prohibition on insider trades during pension fund blackout periods, the certification of financial reports by CEOs and CFOs, the public reporting of CEO and CFO compensation and profits, accelerated reporting of trades by insiders, and ban personal loans to any Executive Officer and Director. Basically, the act requires full disclosure on just about everything.