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Business Roundtable: Governance Costs Rise Sharply

Between last year and this, the percentage of Business Roundtable companies reporting estimated costs of more than $10 million to comply with the Sarbanes-Oxley corporate governance legislation and new stock exchange listing standards more than doubled, to 47% from 22%. About one-third of its companies responding reported compliance costs in the $6 million to $10 million range, according to the Business Roundtable's third annual survey of corporate governance practices, which was released this month.

The Roundtable is an association of CEOs of 160 leading U.S. companies; 106 responded to the survey.

Among its other findings: Nearly 82% of the companies said their boards have at least 80% independent directors, and 83% have boards with an independent chairman, lead director or presiding director.

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