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Accounting News Roundup: Ranking Audit Firms in China and a CFO Take Her Family on a Road Trip | 08.20.15

Time to End Quarterly Reports, Law Firm Says [WSJ]
More shots fired in the quarterly capitalism battle:

Influential law firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz has an idea that may be music to the ears of its big corporate clients and a nightmare for some investors and analysts: end quarterly earnings reports.

Wachtell on Tuesday called on the Securities and Exchange Commission to consider allowing U.S. companies to do away with the obligatory updates, one of the most important rituals on Wall Street and in corporate America, suggesting that they distract executives from long-term goals.

Instead, critics say, quarterly reporting leads to "gimmicks" which may explain why those creative accountants are so popular with CFOs and 1 in 5 companies manage earnings (within GAAP!).

New Target CFO Checked out Merchandise Before Joining [CFOJ]
Incoming CFO Cathy Smith seems to have solved the challenge of balancing work and family:

Ms. Smith joins the Minneapolis-based retailer on Sept. 1, but made a brief appearance on its Wednesday conference call with analysts to discuss fiscalsecond-quarter results. Before joining [T]arget, she “dedicated a couple of weeks to visit more than 65 stores across 10 states and I [dragged] my family along for most of the ride.”

If this was anyone other than the CFO of one of the world's largest retailers, I'd envision the Griswolds zig-zagging across the midwest. 

China audit market update [China Accounting Blog]
Paul Gillis returns with a report on the top audit firms in China, something he has covered since 2011.








Gillis notes that these numbers do not include the consulting practices of these firms, however, it's still fascinating to see the details of a very different playing field for auditors in China.

SEC Says Felon Defied Ban, Prepared Financial Statements for Companies [WSJ, Earlier]
The SEC has notified "Steven John Corso" to "cease his accounting work and surrender all compensation received for such services since April 2009."

J. Walter Thompson Wins Global Creative Duties for KPMG [AgencySpy/Adweek]
This is the agency that helped create the TV spot that prompted former KPMG senior manager Donna Kassman to respond with a open letter/blog post to golfer Stacy Lewis.

Stop Universities From Hoarding Money [NYT]
University of San Diego Tax professor Victor Fleischer found that Yale, Harvard, Texas-Austin, Stanford and Princeton all spent more from their endowments on private equity managers than on students.

Goonies house shut down after owner gets sick of people doing Truffle Shuffle on lawn [Independent]
Apparently 1,500 people were visiting the house per day.