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Accounting News Roundup: Ex-Taylor Bean Chairman Found Guilty; Did Auditors Miss Fraud at Lloyds, RBS?; Tax Prep in the Classroom | 04.20.11

Ex-Taylor Bean Chairman Farkas Found Guilty on All 14 Counts in Fraud Case [Bloomberg]
Lee Farkas, the ex-chairman of Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp., was found guilty of 14 counts of conspiracy and bank, wire and securities fraud in what prosecutors said was a $3 billion scheme involving fake mortgage assets. A federal jury in Alexandria, Virginia, yesterday returned the verdict after one day of deliberations. Farkas, who was free during the trial, was taken into custody. He faces a maximum sentence of 30 years on the conspiracy and bank-fraud charges and 20 years or more on the wire-fraud and securities-fraud counts when he’s sentenced on July 1.

Auditors ‘could have missed fraud’ at Lloyds and RBS [Accountancy Age]
Auditors might not have picked up on financial mismanagement at Lloyds and RBS, so great was the confusion surrounding the banks’ assets in 2008. So concluded the Public Accounts Committee, which today called it “alarming” that neither lender was able prove their assets were not linked to fraud or criminality when they entered the Treasury’s Asset Protection Scheme in January 2009.

Yahoo CFO Says ‘Investments Starting To Pay Off’ [Dow Jones]
Yahoo Inc.’s (YHOO) first quarter-results show that investments the Internet giant has been making are “starting to pay off,” Chief Financial Officer Tim Morse said Tuesday. In an interview with Dow Jones Newswires, Morse noted that Yahoo beat the midpoint of its revenue guidance and topped analysts’ earnings-per-share forecasts by 1 cent. He also noted that that number of users of Yahoo’s branded properties was up 15% over last year and the minutes they spent on the sites rose 17%.

Facebook Seeking Friends in Beltway [WSJ]
Facebook is still trying to find a path to Washington, where the company has only a fledgling lobbying operation, even though it finds its privacy policies under increasing scrutiny and is trying to navigate a politically sensitive expansion into China. In seven years, Facebook has risen from a tiny start-up to an Internet power with a potential market value estimated at more than $50 billion. Now an online forum with more than 600 million users, Facebook faces growing pressure from lawmakers and regulators concerned about the way it uses personal information shared by its users.

State launches probe into campaign to provide superhero capes to jobless [Orlando Sentinel]
Dubbed the “Cape-A-Bility Challenge,” a $73,000 public-relations campaign by Workforce Central Florida features a cartoon character named “Dr. Evil Unemployment” and includes handing out about 6,000 red superhero capes to jobless Central Floridians. The campaign, revealed Saturday in a report in the Orlando Sentinel, was met with derision by many unemployed who questioned spending more than $14,200 on capes and $2,300 on foam cutouts of “Dr. Evil Unemployment.” They said the campaign’s tone risked minimizing the severity of the region’s labor problems.

Subotnik: Why All Students in the Basic Tax Course Should Prepare a Return [TaxProf Blog]
Novel idea.

What Not to Say in a Job Interview [FINS]
Job interviews should not be therapy sessions.

Posted in ANR