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Accounting News Roundup: Coddled Billionaires; An Admission from PwC; What Do Young CPAs Want? | 08.15.11

Stop Coddling the Super-Rich [NYT]
While the poor and middle class fight for us in Afghanistan, and while most Americans struggle to make ends meet, we mega-rich continue to get our extraordinary tax breaks. Some of us are investment managers who earn billions from our daily labors but are allowed to classify our income as “carried interest,” thereby getting a bargain 15 percent tax rate. Others own stock index futures for 10 minutes and have 60 percent of their gain taxed at 15 percent, as if they’d been long-term investors. These and other blessings are showered upon us by legislators in Washington who feel compelled to protect us, much as if we were spotted owls or some other endangered species. It’s nice to have friends in high places.

PwC admits JP Morgan audit failings [Accountancy Age]
PwC has admitted a formal complaint over its audit of JP Morgan Securities (JPMSL) for the seven years to 31 December 2008. Accountancy and Actuarial Disciplinary Board chief Cameron Scott welcomed the firm’s “responsible” position, saying: “Those that accept mistakes can learn lessons from them.” PwC failed to report that JPMSL’s Futures and Options business did not segregate client money, in contravention of rules set out by the Financial Services Authority.

Google to Acquire Motorola Mobility for $12.5 Billion [Bloomberg]
Motorola shareholders will get $40 a share in cash, the companies said in a statement today. That’s 63 percent more than Motorola Mobility’s closing price on the New York Stock Exchange on Aug. 12. Both boards have approved the deal. Google, whose Android software runs mobile phones made by Motorola Mobility and companies such as Samsung Electronics Co., gains patents it needs to compete against Apple Inc.’s iPhone.

SEC Reviews S&P Math, Possible Leak of Rating [Bloomberg]
The Securities and Exchange Commission is scrutinizing the method Standard & Poor’s used to cut the U.S.’s credit rating and whether the firm properly protected the confidential decision, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter. SEC inspectors are examining S&P’s policies for conducting such analyses and whether those procedures were followed when the New York-based firm downgraded the U.S.’s credit rating Aug. 5, said the person, who declined to be identified because the inquiry isn’t public.

What do young professionals want? [CPA Success]
Other than money, of course.

Accountant allegedly stole $241K from law firm[NF]
For two-and-a-half years, an accountant was allegedly using a prominent law firm’s bank account she controlled to allegedly pay her personal bills and even write herself double paychecks. Sharon Lynne Samples, 48, was booked July 31 and charged with taking $241,722 from the law offices of Lipscomb, Johnson, Sleister, Dailey and Smith, LLP, according to a Cumming Police incident report.

Bernie Madoff ditched by his wife of 52 years as she seeks reconciliation with son [Daily Mail]
The wife of Bernard Madoff has severed ties with the disgraced Wall Street financier and not seen him for more than six months, it has been revealed. Ruth Madoff, who has been married to the convicted fraudster for 52 years, has shunned her high school sweetheart as she allegedly seeks reconciliation with her son.

Deloitte Appoints Eric Openshaw to Lead U.S. Technology, Media and Telecommunications Practice [Deloitte]
In his new role, Openshaw will drive industry strategy, research, service development and delivery to the organization’s core [Technology, Media and Telecommunications] clients. Openshaw succeeds Phil Asmundson, who continues to lead Deloitte’s U.S. Media & Entertainment and Telecommunications as well as the Global Telecommunications sectors.

Posted in ANR