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Accounting News Roundup: Decluttering Annual Reports; There’s Blood in the Tax Reform Waters; The Dog Ate My iPhone | 06.28.13

Vatican cleric arrested in ‘€20m’ probe [FT]
A Vatican cleric already under investigation for alleged fraud involving the Vatican bank, a former secret service agent and a financial broker were arrested on Friday in connection with an alleged plot to smuggle €20m into Italy from Switzerland on a government aeroplane. The arrests are a further blow to the Vatican as Pope Francis seeks to reform the Catholic Church’s bureaucracy and clean up the scandal-plagued Institute for Religious Works (IOR), the official name of the Vatican bank. They come two days after the pontiff set up a five-member commission to assess how to reform the bank. Monsignor Nunzio Scarano, an accountant in the Vatican’s internal accounting administration, Giovanni Maria Zito, a former agent who is now a Carabiniere police officer, and Giovanni Carenzio were detained in the early hours for their alleged involvement in an operation to recover money Mr Carenzio had been given to invest.

Time to declutter annual reports, says accounting rule setter [Reuters]

A global accounting standard setter has pledged a bonfire of the boilerplates to rid annual company reports of unnecessary disclosures that confuse investors. Hans Hoogervorst, chairman of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), said book-keeping rules will be changed to cut swathes through irrelevant sections of ballooning annual statements. "The risk is that annual reports become simply compliance documents, rather than instruments of communication," Hoogervorst said in a speech in Amsterdam on Thursday.
Suit Accuses Corzine of a Failure at the Helm [DealBook]
On Thursday, federal regulators sued Mr. Corzine in connection with the collapse of the brokerage firm MF Global and apparent misuse of customer money during its final days. Mr. Corzine, a former United States senator and New Jersey governor, ran the firm until its bankruptcy in October 2011. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the federal agency that regulated MF Global, argued in the lawsuit that Mr. Corzine had failed to prevent a lower-level employee from transferring customer money to banks and clearinghouses. The agency also sued that employee, Edith O’Brien, assistant treasurer, who oversaw the transfer of customer money from the firm’s Chicago office.

K St. feeding frenzy expected from 'blank slate' tax reform [The Hill]

A separate lobbyist said the wide-open debate could result in something resembling a food fight, as various groups sparred and jockeyed for position, hunting for lawmakers to make the case for them. "You're going up against the entire world,” the lobbyist said. “There will be a ton of money spent on this."

An 18-Hole Mini-Golf Course in the Office? Yep [CNBC]
"We have a lot of competitive people here – that's one of the reasons we're such a strong company," said Stewart Grilli the mastermind behind the 18-hole mini-golf course that took up an entire floor. "There's a lot of competitive juices but it's always in good fun," Grilli said. Grilli is an enterprise-relationship manager but his team consisted of 118 people spanning several departments, including sales and operations. They broke up into sub-groups to design each hole. There's a golf cart that was created by building a frame on a toy car that someone's child had grown out of. The last few holes have a carnival theme, complete with side games, a Zoltar fortune-telling machine and treats such as popcorn, cotton candy and snow cones. For the big finish, when you sink the last hole, lights flash and music plays. That one was designed by a former intern. (And yes, they hired him!)

Your Pets Are Responsible For $3B in Gadget Damage [ABC]
Hopefully they're mostly work devices.

Reporter Files Report on Flood While Sitting on Shoulders of Victim [Gawker]
Footage of Narayan Pargaien's report for News Express went viral in India earlier this week, and ultimately led to the journalist's termination after 17 years on the job. In the clip, which News Express says never aired, Pargaien can be seen reporting on the deadly floods that have submerged the northern state of Uttarakhand, forcing the evacuation of over 100,000 people. Pargaien later claimed that the man, whose home was destroyed by floodwaters, offered to carry him on his shoulders, but News Express said in a statement that Pargaien should have declined.


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