Dena's Feed
Aug 14, 2012

Deloitte CEO defends firm’s Standard Chartered work

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Deloitte LLP Chief Executive Joe Echevarria on Monday fought back against allegations that his firm helped Standard Chartered hide transactions with Iran, saying charges by the top New York state banking regulator were “distortions of the facts.”

Echevarria, CEO since June 2011, defended Deloitte in his first interview since the firm was dragged into the spotlight over its independent reviews of British bank Standard Chartered.

Aug 1, 2012

Auditor watchdog: U.S. directors can ask for inspection reports

NEW YORK/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – In a bid to lift some of the secrecy around U.S. audit firms, a watchdog board on Wednesday told corporate directors that they may seek out non-public information about auditor inspections.

U.S. law bars regulators from making public key parts of reports on inspections of audit firms. But the law does not prevent audit committees of corporate boards from seeking the reports from auditors, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board said on Wednesday.

Jul 29, 2012

Analysis: A decade on, is Sarbanes-Oxley working?

By Kevin Drawbaugh and Dena Aubin

(Reuters) – When Peregrine Financial collapsed earlier this month, a nagging question resurfaced. As in the implosion of Lehman Brothers, the fall of Bernard Madoff and other cases in recent years, many asked: Where were the accountants?

That this question still arises could be seen as an indictment of the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley law, enacted 10 years ago on Monday. The law was a response to accountants’ failures to sound the alarm about financial misconduct at Enron Corp, WorldCom and a host of other companies.

Jul 18, 2012

SEC delays court action seeking Deloitte China audit papers

By Aruna Viswanatha and Dena Aubin

(Reuters) – The Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday sought to delay its legal battle with a Chinese unit of accounting firm Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu over audit documents, citing ongoing negotiations with Chinese regulators.

In a filing with a U.S. federal court, the SEC said it wanted a six-month stay so it could try to work out an arrangement with Chinese regulators to get audit documents.

Jul 13, 2012

SEC staff pans direct adoption of global accounting

NEW YORK, July 13 (Reuters) – A full-scale adoption of
international accounting standards by the United States has
little support and few investors or companies are prepared for
it, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission said on Friday.

In a long-awaited staff report, the SEC said a wholesale
switch to international standards would strain the resources of
U.S. companies and a staged transition has more support.

Jul 12, 2012

My word! U.S. accountants suggest brevity a virtue

NEW YORK, July 12 (Reuters) – Keep it short.

So said the professional group that sets U.S. accounting
standards in a statement on Thursday about the financial reports
companies issue each year.

The Financial Accounting Standards Board is seeking comment
through Nov. 16 on ways to make financial reports more relevant
and useful.

Jul 6, 2012
via Tax Break

ABA members argue legality of audit firm rotation proposal

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The watchdog for U.S. auditors has been debating some of the toughest reforms in many auditors’ memories this year. Now some legal experts are questioning whether it has the authority to impose its most controversial idea – making companies switch, or rotate, audit firms after a set number of years.

In a letter to the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, members of the American Bar Association joined a long line of critics of rotation. The lawyers cited the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley act, which created the PCAOB, and questioned where it gave the board any authority to mandate rotation.

Jun 28, 2012

Switching auditors not enough to end fraud-experts

By Dena Aubin

(Reuters) – Making U.S. companies switch or rotate auditors every few years would not end audit failures, and regulators should consider additional measures to protect investors, former securities regulators and legal experts said on Thursday.

The auditing profession has become a comfortable oligopoly and its basic product has become suspect, said Harold Williams, former chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, at a forum in San Francisco.

Jun 28, 2012

Rotation not enough to improve audits – experts

June 28 (Reuters) – Making U.S. companies switch or rotate
auditors every few years would not end audit failures, and
regulators should consider additional measures to protect
investors, former securities regulators and legal experts said
on Thursday.

The auditing profession has become a comfortable oligopoly
and its basic product has become suspect, said Harold Williams,
former chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission,
at a forum in San Francisco.

Jun 19, 2012

SEC seeks Big 4 audit papers from China -source

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Chinese arms of all of the Big Four audit firms have been asked by U.S. regulators to turn over documents related to audits of China-based companies that are listed in the United States, a person familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.

The formal requests made by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission raise the stakes in a standoff between U.S. authorities, the companies and Chinese officials over access to the auditors’ work papers.