Definition of cook the books in English:

cook the books

phrase

informal
  • Alter facts or figures dishonestly or illegally.

    ‘he was an accountant, he could have cooked the books and made himself a lot more money’
    • ‘The guidelines, created by the government in 1991, instruct federal judges on how to punish organizations guilty of crimes such as fraud, polluting, and cooking the books.’
    • ‘Certainly, none of these CEOs has been accused of looting the company or cooking the books.’
    • ‘But in the cases that we refer to the criminal authorities, it is pretty clear that these are people who were deliberately and knowingly cooking the books.’
    • ‘Yes, I mean, Martha was not a white-collar criminal raiding a corporate community chest, cooking the books.’
    • ‘The effects were caused, however, by the crooks who cooked the books.’
    • ‘‘Tanning salons are an extremely popular way to clean up dirty money because there is a lot of potential for cooking the books,’ said one former member of the Scottish Crime Squad.’
    • ‘This procedure tells the students that the teacher is more than likely to be a cheat and a sneak, who will cook the books if given a chance.’
    • ‘Does he engage in dishonest schemes such as cooking the books?’
    • ‘‘The fact is, it is too easy to cook the books if there is no regulatory structure to check it,’ he said.’
    • ‘He was a crook who absolutely cooked the books to hide his crimes.’
    • ‘These people who have succumbed to the temptations of cooking the books and just become greedy at the expense of the people who trusted them - there's no excuse for that.’
    • ‘My administration will do everything in its power to end the days of cooking the books and shading the truth and breaking our laws.’
    • ‘When a company cooks the books, its best bet is to come clean itself.’
    • ‘Historical fact is one thing, but cooking the books where science is concerned is another altogether.’
    • ‘But then analysts stepped in and said, in effect, ‘We know the company and it's not cooking the books.’’
    • ‘And while it is very difficult for investors to know if a company is cooking the books until it's too late, they don't have to be completely in the dark about questionable management activities and dealings.’
    • ‘But stakeholders in government (the citizens) don't see a correspondingly immediate and painful financial consequence when their government cooks the books.’
    • ‘Even his enemies find it hard not to admire the skill with which he cooks the books.’
    • ‘He, or rather those cooking the books for him, attempts to scare us with projections that the Social Security trust fund will begin to run deficits thirty-eight years from now.’
    • ‘He has largely done it, because he claims insurance companies, with the collusion of regulators, have been cooking the books for years.’
    falsify, manipulate, massage, rig, distort, pervert, misrepresent, juggle, doctor, alter, tamper with, interfere with
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