This chapter suggest that different episodes where deceptive financial reporting practices have led to demands for investor protection that the state has responded to in a variety of different ways. Nineteenth-century corporate financial statements (CFS) have been the subject of much criticism from accounting historians. The crux of the problem was that, although profitability was sensitive to changing economic conditions, managers, such as the chairman of the Great Western Railway, Charles Russell, believed that shareholders desired a 'uniform and equable dividend'. The chapter argues that subsequent improvements in the CFS of railway companies where it is revealed that problems resurfaced in the mid-1860s leading to the introduction of a statutory audit requirement in 1867 and an obligation to publish accounts conforming to a standardized format the following year. Several private members' bills were presented to parliament containing requirements for a statutory audit and the publication of standardized accounts by banks and other joint stock companies.