Accounting & Auditing Highlights for the Week Ending May 4, 2018


Accounting Highlights:

Accounting Fraud

May 1: Panasonic Corp., in a settlement announced April 30, will pay $143 million in disgorgement to the Securities and Exchange Commission, while Panasonic Avionics Corp. agreed to pay about $137 million in penalties to the Justice Department for violations of the accounting provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Read the full story here. (Subscription required.)

May 1: The former chief financial officer of Autonomy Corp. was found guilty of orchestrating an accounting fraud to arrive at the $10.3 billion price Hewlett-Packard Co. paid for the U.K. software maker more than six years ago. Read the full story here. (Subscription required.)

Cryptocurrencies

May 1: Cryptocurrencies pose a threat and must be regulated, said the CEOs of Nasdaq Inc., and Bank of America Corp, ringing alarm bells about the nascent crypto market. Read the full story here. (Subscription required.)

FASB

May 3: Not-for-profit organizations will get accounting clarifications that provide consistency for how to report grants from the federal government, foundations, and other contributors. Click here to read more about changes in how nonprofits account for grants. (Subscription required.)

Insurance

May 2: Coming accounting changes for life insurance and annuities contracts will introduce periodic swings in income that could scare off investors, chief accountants of Lincoln National Corp. and Prudential Financial Inc., told Bloomberg Tax. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Leasing

April 30: Less than a fifth of companies with the largest lease portfolios have begun to select software or have chosen a vendor to help them comply with new accounting rules for leases that take effect in eight months. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Revenue Recognition

May 4: The clock is ticking for privately held companies to take steps to meet a new accounting standard for revenue from contracts with customers. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Tax Reform

May 4: The IRS has plenty of work to do in the wake of the 2017 tax act—including determining the definition of a “business.” Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Workforce development

April 30: Fifty-one percent of corporate tax departments and 40 percent of accounting firms said creating a pipeline of diverse job candidates is the biggest issue they face in hiring a diverse workforce, according to a recent Bloomberg Tax survey of more than 400 tax and accounting professionals. Click here to read more about the community’s pipeline problem. (Subscription required.)

Management

May 1: Three Perkins Coie LLP attorneys offer a practical guide to investigating allegations of internal misconduct. They answer the most common questions and explain why these steps are increasingly important, especially when claims are made against members of the board or management. Click here to read the full Insight article. (Subscription required.)

May 3: MetLife Inc. Chief Financial Officer John Hele plans to leave as the company stumbles through a series of missteps that include accounting issues and regulatory investigations. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

XBRL

May 1: The Financial Accounting Standards Board has proposed data tagging guides and improvements related to accounting rules for revenue recognition and collaborative arrangements under eXtensible Business Reporting Language. Read the full story here. (Subscription required.)

Auditing Highlights:

Audit committees

May 3: A fast-approaching deadline for new accounting rules has put more work on the plates of audit committee members, who must make sure their companies are ready to report leases on their balance sheets for the first time. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Auditor independence

May 4: Auditors could have more flexibility to audit mutual funds, 401(K) funds, and debt products tenuously linked to their own loans and debt under a proposal to amend the Securities and Exchange Commission's auditor independence rules. Read the full story here. (Subscription required.)

PCAOB

May 3: William Duhnke, the newly named chair of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, said 2018 will be a transition year for the board. He made the statements in a letter included in the board’s annual report. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

International Accounting Highlights:

Accounting standards

April 30: International accounting standards help strengthen economies, argues Joseph Bryson, director of quality and development at the International Federation of Accountants. Applying a common language to financial reporting allows businesses, governments, and economies to fully participate in the global economic system and gain access to the free flow of capital, enabling wider economic growth. Read the full Insight article here. (Subscription required.)

Australia

May 1: Global medical device and software group ResMed has vowed to fight the Australian Tax Office over an adverse outcome to a recent tax audit of intra-group pricing among its Australian-based subsidiaries involving $190 million. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

India

April 30: Tax practitioners are submitting comments to India's tax authority in the hopes of bringing changes to the newly implemented long-term capital gains tax. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Sweden

May 3: Sweden plans to require major companies to report publicly how long it takes them to pay their suppliers in a bid to break a trend of lengthening delinquencies. Read the full story here. (Subscription required.)

United Kingdom

May 2: The U.K. government may need more power to search the premises of warehousing businesses like Amazon.com Inc. as part of its efforts to fight abusive tax planning, a senior official said. Read the full story here. (Subscription required.)

Composed and compiled by Amanda Iacone, accounting reporter for Bloomberg Tax.

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