Accounting & Auditing Highlights for the Week Ending May 11, 2018


Auditing Coverage:

PCAOB

May 7: After 15 years in business, the PCAOB is ready to shed its regulator-startup status. The five new board members are rethinking the U.S. audit overseer’s work and focus as one of three regulators tasked with setting the ground rules for how businesses operate. Click here to read the full story—part of our coverage of the Baruch College conference on financial reporting. (Subscription required.)

Audit Quality

May 7: The SEC’s chief accountant said that taking a “fresh look” at governance—including the appointment of outside directors—is one step audit firms can take to earn the public’s trust. The comments came a week after one of the largest accounting firms announced it would add outside directors to its board. Click here to read the full story — part of our coverage of the Baruch College conference on financial reporting. (Subscription required.)

Enforcement

May 11: Two former CEOs of Deloitte Turkey and a senior partner have been barred from working with any accounting firms registered with the PCAOB. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

U.S. Accounting Coverage:

Leasing

May 7: Google’s chief accountant urged companies not to underestimate the effort needed to gather the necessary information for their lease disclosures. “Capturing that data is incredibly important, and that's going to be one of the hardest things you have to do.” Click here to read the full story—part of our coverage of the Baruch College conference on financial reporting. (Subscription required.)

Revenue Recognition

May 10: The SEC plans to take a “hard look” at revenue recognition disclosures that companies detail in their quarterly reports. And companies can expect comments from the regulator if those disclosures aren't clear, an SEC official said. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Blockchain

May 11: Finance executives aren't exactly bullish on cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, but they see the potential for the underlying blockchain framework and are ready to explore its possibilities, according to a recent survey of CFOs. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Non-GAAP

May 7: Companies that adopt new rules designed to improve the transparency of minority equity investments in other companies can use reporting figures that fall outside of standardized generally accepted accounting principles, the SEC’s chief accountant said. Click here to read the full story—part of our coverage of the Baruch College conference on financial reporting. (Subscription required.)

Tax Reform

May 7: Now is the time for companies to model the impact of the new U.S. tax reform law on their global operations to gauge how to respond to it, a pair of Ernst & Young LLP international tax partners said. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

May 7: The SEC will be monitoring quarterly filings to see how disclosures related to the new tax law evolve. Click here to read the full story—part of our coverage of the Baruch College conference on financial reporting. (Subscription required.)

Pension Obligations

May 10: A public hospital in Mississippi could default on a bond it issued because of changes in government accounting that require pension obligations to go on the books. Click here to read the full story.  (Subscription required.)

Other Accounting Standards

May 8: Warren Buffett has warned about the “nightmare” tied to new accounting-rule changes for investments in equity securities. And those rules have now helped fuel the company's first net loss since 2009. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

May 8: U.S. accounting standard setters have dropped an outdated bad-debt rule for banks. Click here to read more about the removal of the Comptroller of the Currency's Banking Circular 202, Accounting for Net Deferred Tax Charges. (Subscription required.)

Discrimination

May 7: An Ernst & Young Global Limited partner who claimed she was groped by a colleague in front of other employees at Walt Disney World Resort has reached a settlement with the company. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

SEC

May 8: SEC Commissioner Michael Piwowar intends to step down this summer, the Republican confirmed in an interview with Bloomberg BNA May 7. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

May 11: The SEC isn't planning to make cybersecurity cases part of the “bread and butter” of its enforcement activity, despite its multimillion-dollar penalty against the former Yahoo! Inc., a senior Securities and Exchange Commission official said. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Corporate Enforcement

May 10: The U.S. deputy attorney general thinks some companies are overpaying for their crimes, and he wants that to stop. In a speech, Rod Rosenstein said that although large fines are sometimes warranted, they shouldn't be the result of “piling on” by several enforcement authorities. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Compliance

May 9: Compliance leaders face a regulatory landscape with shifting goal lines especially as the Trump administration pursues its plans to pullback regulations on businesses. Here at the top five areas that compliance leaders need to focus on to meet the challenge this year and beyond. Click here to read the full Insight report. (Subscription required.)

Internal Controls

May 9: A GAO report found that the IRS needs to make improvements to its own internal controls. Click here to read the full report. (Subscription required.)

International Accounting Highlights:

Steinhoff Accounting Scandal

May 11: Steinhoff International Holdings NV, the beleaguered South African retailer, said that the roles played by former executives in an accounting scandal are being investigated and the company is taking legal advice on how to seek justice. Click here to read the full story. (Subscription required.)

Russia

May 9: The Russian Ministry of Finance explained recent changes to IFRS and IAS provisions. Click here to read the full report. (Subscription required.)

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

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