The regulatory policies and enforcement approaches of US authorities make US companies less competitive in global markets. Almost two thirds (60%) of those surveyed at a global compliance conference hosted by law firm Eversheds said they struggle for attention or resources to implement regulatory compliance globally.

SOX compliance appears no longer to be a priority, with only 3% indicating that it was among their top two concerns. One out of five respondents rated their global compliance efforts ‘fair to poor’ and more than half (56%) said that despite progress in the past 18 months, their global compliance efforts need improving.

The Eversheds LLP global compliance survey also revealed that the impact of US laws and regulations in a post-Enron era is questioned by US business. More than one third (35%) of respondents said the enforcement of US laws and regulations for companies acting internationally over the last two to three years was too aggressive, while 37% conceded it was aggressive but necessary. Only 15% claimed it was appropriate. 69% of those surveyed said increased regulation and enforcement have motivated only ‘some or little reduction in wrongdoing’.