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Accounting News Roundup: SEC’s Beef with Big 4 Stonewalling; House Passes Auditor Rotation Ban Bill; EY’s Avoidable Sexy Boy Problem | 07.09.13

U.S. SEC says audit firms hinder accounting fraud probes [Reuters]
U.S. federal regulators tried to persuade a judge on Monday to sanction the Chinese arms of the world's top five accounting firms, saying their refusal to hand over audit work papers has hindered investigations into fraud at U.S.-listed Chinese firms. In testimony during a hearing at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, an SEC official alleged that Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu LLP's failure to turn over audit records has stalled a three-year-old probe into financial fraud at a large solar power company. "We've had significant delays," said Laura Josephs, an SEC assistant enforcement director. She added that Deloitte was "continuing to issue audit opinions" both for that company and others, even while it failed to comply with the SEC's request.

House Passes Bill to Ban Auditor Term Limits [CFOJ, Earlier]
U.S. legislators on Monday night passed a bill that could prevent the nation’s audit watchdog from ever forcing public companies to periodically rotate their auditors. The House of Representatives voted 321-62 in favor bill, H.R. 1564, though it may still face a tough road in the Senate. The legislation was co-sponsored by Rep. Robert Hurt (R., Va.) and Rep. Gregory Meeks (D., N.Y.) and passed with support from 211 Republicans and 110 Democrats. The 62 representatives who voted against the bill were all Democrats.

Ernst & Young's 'topless men' problem could have been avoided [LAT]
Brilliant! "Perhaps the accounting firm should have run a Google image search first."

PwC executive: Number of our women promotions 'disappointingly low' [Telegraph]

Grant Thornton acquires the UK Financial Services Advisory arm of Navigant [GT]
At some point in the future, there will fewere choices for professional services firms than cars.

Lauryn Hill starts prison sentence for taxes [AP]
Three months? Meh. She'll be back in time for the World Series.

Which States are Best for Small Businesses? [TF]
Rhode Island could use a hand here.

Mitt Romney Is Big in Kenya [NYM]
His t-shirts, anyway.

Posted in ANR