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Accounting News Roundup: PwC’s Secret Recruiting Sauce; Deloitte’s Paperwork Snafu; POTUS Candidate Tax Returns | 04.27.12

Groupon CEO Explains His Plans for Domination [Digits/WSJ]
During a Groupon employee meeting Wednesday that was detailed by The Wall Street Journal, Mason – working without notes – laid out five initiatives the daily-deals site has in the works to professionalize its financial operations and to push more people to purchase Groupon’s daily offers for discounted restaurant meals, massages and other services.

How To Hire Like PricewaterhouseCoopers [Forbes]
Step one: identify a KPMG partner…

Pirc wants KPMG ousted as Standard Chartered auditor [Accountancy Age]
The shareholder governance group is urging institutional investors to vote against the bank's annual report; auditors and audit committee chair Rudy Markham because it claims it has failed to to provide a "true and fair view" of its financial position.

Deloitte Loses Guam Client Over Registration Lapse [CW]
Deloitte & Touche Guam applied in January 2012 for registration with the PCAOB. The board recently denied the registration request because the firm did not demonstrate the “degree of care” expected of a public accounting firm operating in U.S. capital markets, the PCAOB said. The firm audited financial statements for the Bank of Guam, a U.S. registrant, for six years before applying for registration, according to the order denying registration, violating the board's rule that the firm must be registered with the board before it can perform such audit work. The Bank of Guam says Deloitte & Touch Guam began serving as it independent auditor for its fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2003, just as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act was taking effect, putting the regulation of audit firms into motion.

Tax center examines candidates' tax returns [OTM/The Hill]
The Tax Policy Center, a well-respected nonpartisan outfit, found that all of President Obama’s nearly $800,000 in adjusted gross income was taxed at regular rates as high as 35 percent. In all, the president paid a 23.4 percent tax rate, after claiming more than $275,000 worth of itemized deductions. On the other side of the aisle, more than half of Mitt Romney’s income came from investments, and the likely GOP nominee had no earnings. Because of that, more than $11.5 million of the former Massachusetts governor’s income was taxed at the 15 percent rate for dividends and capital gains. 

Unscrupulous tax preparers [DCJ/Reuters]
[W]hy would anyone tell the tax man they made more than they did? The answer is that Congress has created an incentive for the poorest of the working poor to report more than their actual incomes. Doing so can be worth more than $3,000 to impoverished working parents under a form of negative income tax known as the Earned Income Tax Credit that sends government money to the working poor. But it is not the working poor themselves who make up phony numbers. The problem is with unscrupulous income tax preparers, the IRS Taxpayer Advocate, Nina E. Olson, and others who work with the poor tell me. Ginning up nonexistent income lets dishonest tax preparers charge larger fees and helps attract new clients as word spreads of their success at getting big refunds.

Senator Cardin: Tax Simplification Unnecessary Because We Have Computers [Tax Foundation]
Joseph Henchman: "I felt compelled to jump in when Senator Cardin said that tax simplification wasn't really an issue anymore, because of software and how amazing computers are. (He mentioned how great his iPad is.) I responded that the problem was not one of computing power, but of tracking and interpreting rules and tax bases from over 9,600 sales tax jurisdictions in the United States. States are moving away from simplicity, away from uniformity. I noted that we have trouble keeping up with it all and we're a tax policy think tank (and not a small business). Cardin tartly replied that we should buy better software. We bickered back and forth for a bit while everyone in the room watched."
GM CFO Pay Held Back by Government Stake [CFOJ]
That's a bummer.
Conference Leaders Agree to Pursue 4-Team Playoff [NYT]
A mini bracket coming your way.
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