How It All Went So Sour


ON THE MARCH: Parmalat consumers and investors protest in front of Rome's Bankitalia headquarters.

For a hard-charging executive like Alberto Ferraris, being named chief financial officer of a €7.6 billion company was a career-making moment — and he wasn't going to let a few nagging doubts stand in his way. Since the company was Parmalat, the Italian dairy-and-food conglomerate the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has charged with perpetrating "one of the largest and most brazen corporate financial frauds in history," and since Ferraris now faces charges of market rigging and issuing false information, he may wish he had heeded those doubts. But back in March...

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