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October 2, 2023

Accounting News Roundup: Big Auditors, A Tax Situation and United | 04.11.17

Big auditors

Accounting Today reports on the latest numbers out of Audit Analytics on public company auditors. And congrats to EY, the audit-yiest of the auditors:

Big Four firm Ernst & Young maintains its top spot in the rankings of auditors of public companies, with over 250 public company clients more than its nearest rival, according to a recent study.

In Audit Analytics’ Who Audits Public Companies – 2017 Edition, which was just completed, EY totaled 947 public companies, followed by fellow Big Four firms PwC, KPMG and Deloitte & Touche with 696, 665 and 642, respectively.

For those scoring at home, the seven largest firms — Big 4 + BDO, Grant Thornton, RSM — audit 96.5% of the large accelerated filers.

A tax situation

A couple of years ago, when the Department of Justice charged Jersey Shore star Michael Sorrentino with tax evasion, most people shrugged and said, “Sounds about right.” Last Friday, the DOJ expanded on their indictment of Sorrentino and his brother Marc, which also seems about right:

According to the superseding indictment, Michael was a reality television personality who gained fame on the television show “The Jersey Shore,” which first appeared on the MTV network. Michael and his brother Marc created businesses, such as MPS Entertainment LLC and Situation Nation Inc., to exploit Michael’s celebrity status. The superseding indictment alleges that the brothers conspired to defraud the United States by not paying all federal income tax owed on approximately $8.9 million that Michael earned between 2010 and 2012. It is alleged that the brothers filed or caused to be filed with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) false tax returns that understated gross receipts, claimed fraudulent business deductions, disguised income payments made to the brothers and to others and underreported net business income. As part of the conspiracy, the brothers also allegedly commingled funds among business and personal bank accounts and used the money from the business bank accounts to pay for personal items, such as high-end luxury vehicles and clothing.

I’m sure the Sorrentinos socked plenty of money away to pay defense attorneys for precisely this kind of….oh never mind.

People are worried about IRS phone scams

Nah, everything’s fine now:

Indian police said on Saturday they had arrested the suspected mastermind behind a call center scam run out of a Mumbai suburb that targeted thousands of Americans and netted more than $300 million.

Sagar Thakkar, 24, also known as Shaggy, was arrested at Mumbai’s international airport in the early hours of Saturday after he flew in from Dubai, Mukund Hatote, a police officer on the case, told Reuters.

Good job everyone.


Years ago, when I was still serving the capital markets, I was flying back to New York after visiting friends in Colorado. I had a layover in Chicago and, of course, United oversold the flight and needed volunteers to give up their seats. They were offering the usual — free meals, hotel, a $400 voucher — but also seating in 1st Class for the first flight out the next morning. I wasn’t in a hurry to get back to work (life at KPMG wasn’t so great at this time) so I emailed my manager and said I would be in late. No problem. I happily took all the loot and even had a free beer for breakfast on the flight home.

The weirdest thing about the whole United-violently-dragging-a-passenger-off-a-flight debacle is that no one wanted an $800 voucher. I get that some people — including the doctor they dragged off! — needed to get to where they were going, but there wasn’t a single miserable CPA on that flight who wanted to avoid work for just a little bit longer? You have to seize these opportunities when they come your way.

Previously, on Going Concern…

Marsha Leest wrote about political opinions when choosing an employer. And people who want to get out of paying taxes should suffer more humiliation than an IRS tattoo.

In other news:

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