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November 28, 2022

Accounting News Roundup: Judge Throws out Tax Preparer Regulations; The Big 4 in Davos; No, Phil! No! | 01.21.13

Dell Said to Hire Evercore to Seek Higher Bids After Buyout [Bloomberg]
Dell Inc. (DELL), which may announce this week it’s being taken private by a group led by Silver Lake Management LLC, hired Evercore Partners Inc. (EVR) to advise a special committee of the board and to test whether the company could get a better offer, said two people with knowledge of the matter. Dell hired the boutique investment bank to run a so-called go-shop process should a buyout be formalized, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the process is private. Dell expects shareholder lawsuits if a deal is announced, said the people, and the go-shop process will show whether there are superior offers from other buyout firms or companies.

Dell Leveraged Buyout May Hinge on Cash Hoard Outside U.S. [Bloomberg]
Like many of the world’s largest technology companies, Dell has legally avoided billions of dollars in income taxes by attributing profits to overseas subsidiaries in tax havens. Bringing the cash back to the U.S. to finance the buyout would risk subjecting the money to the 35 percent corporate income tax rate, with a credit for any foreign income tax they’ve already paid. “You can be sure the buyout team is looking at the most effective way that asset can be used. They’re spending hours and hours on this,” said Antony Page, a professor at Indiana University’s Robert H. McKinney School of Law and a former mergers and acquisitions lawyer. “There may be loopholes in there that sophisticated tax lawyers can find that aren’t immediately obvious.”

Unusual Roots for Firm in Caterpillar Scandal [WSJ]
As Caterpillar Inc. grapples with an accounting scandal at a Chinese company it bought last year to drive growth in its mining business, the Chinese business's unusual pedigree is coming into focus. The U.S. equipment maker said last week that it would write off $580 million of the about $700 million it paid in June to buy ERA Mining Machinery Ltd., a Chinese maker of mine-safety equipment. Caterpillar alleged "accounting misconduct" at ERA, including overstatements of its profit in the years before the acquisition. It didn't name anyone it suspected of the alleged misconduct. The scandal contributed to the departure of a senior Caterpillar executive, according to a person familiar with the matter. Luis de Leon, a vice president responsible for the mining-products division, was "leaving the company to pursue other opportunities," Caterpillar said in a statement Friday. His exit, this person said, was partly related to Caterpillar's displeasure over the problems at ERA Mining, though Mr. de Leon wasn't being accused of any misdeeds.

IRS loses lawsuit filed by tax preparers opposed to new regulations, competency exam [AP via TF]
A federal judge on Friday barred the IRS from imposing a series of new regulations, including a competency exam, on hundreds of thousands of tax preparers. U.S. District Judge James Boasberg in Washington ruled against the IRS in favor of three tax preparers who filed suit last year with the help of a libertarian legal group, the Arlington, Va.-based Institute for Justice.

The confidential list of everyone attending Davos this year [Quartz]
Ernst & Young is sending six people. Deloitte, KPMG, and PwC are sending five. Among them — Weinberger, Turley, Echevarria, Salzberg, Veihmeyer, Andrew, Moritz, Nally.

Is New York's high cigarette tax rate why the Empire State tops the smuggler list? [DMWT]
Can't hurt!

Golfer Phil Mickelson May Call It Quits Due To Climbing Tax Rates [Tony Nitti/Forbes]
KPMG's Phil team is working tirelessly to prevent such a travesty from happening.

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