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ANR: Will Audit Talks with China Amount To Anything?; Hedge Accounting Under IFRS; Mile High Madam Avoids 69 Charges After Guilty Tax Plea | 07.07.11

U.S.-China audit talks seen making only modest progress [Reuters]
U.S. and Chinese securities regulators may soon strike a deal that would allow the Americans some access to Chinese auditors, but it is likely to be more superficial than Washington wants. A string of accounting scandals at U.S.-listed Chinese companies has increased pressure on regulators in both nations to toughen oversight of Chinese auditors. But a full-fledged agreement that allows the U.S. auditor watchdog, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), to review the work and papers of China-based auditors through formal inspections would be difficult to achieve, experts said.

Obama to Push for Wider Deal With G.O.P. on Deficit Cuts [NYT]
Heading into a crucial negotiating session on a budget deal on Thursday, President Obama has raised his sights and wants to strike a far-reaching agreement on cutting the federal deficit as Speaker John A. Boehner has signaled new willingness to bargain on revenues.

New Accounting Rule Would Favor Hedgers [CFOJ]
The proposed rule, International Financial Reporting Standard 9, greatly expands the kinds of transactions that qualify for hedge accounting under the current rule, International Accounting Standard 39, and the SEC is debating when, and under what conditions, U.S. companies would have to report their results in IFRS instead of U.S. GAAP. Hedge accounting is one area where the two regimes currently stand far apart.

Glass Lewis Faults RIM Governance Stance [Bloomberg]
Research In Motion Ltd. (RIMM)’s decision to study the overhaul of its management structure to avoid a shareholder vote next week indicates it’s avoiding a commitment to appoint an independent chair, Glass Lewis & Co. said. “The appointment of independent board leadership does not require further study, but rather concrete action,” Dimitri Zagoroff and Marian Macindoe, analysts with the San Francisco- based proxy adviser firm, wrote in a report. Glass Lewis advises investors that manage more than $15 trillion on proxy voting.

In Minnesota shutdown, workers who calculate the cost are laid off [WaPo]
Now more than six days old, the shutdown has continued to shutter parks and toll booths and to leave thousands of government workers at home. The state’s Democratic governor and Republican lawmakers continued to wrangle, without resolution, over a $5 billion budget gap Wednesday. The talks were continuing without clarity on the shutdown’s cost. The staff members who would calculate those figures are “currently laid off,” said John Pollard, a spokesman for Minnesota Management and Budget.

Another Reason to Insist on the Ring [Tax Update]
Cohabitation has its tax consequences.

House, Senate Tax Panels to Hear Ideas for Tax Overhaul at Joint Session [WSJ]
House and Senate tax-writing committees will hold a rare joint hearing to examine potential ideas for a tax overhaul. It’s reportedly the first joint hearing by the two panels on a tax issue since 1940, according to a press release issued late Wednesday. The hearing next Wednesday in the Capitol Visitor Center could signal a greater degree of cooperation over tax changes in the future, as the panels gear up for what could be an intensive effort to overhaul the federal tax code.

IASB’s New Pension Accounting Will Mean Big Changes [Institutional Investor]
A bunch of foreign corporations likely are starting to reevaluate their pension plans’ asset allocations, thanks to the International Accounting Standards Board. In June the IASB, whose accounting rules are used by about 120 countries that include all European Union members, published its amendments to IAS 19 Employee Benefits, which cover how defined benefit plan sponsors handle pensions in their financial statements.

Madam admits tax fraud in Denver brothel case [9News]
The madam of a high-end prostitution business that allegedly catered to some of Denver’s most famous and successful residents admits she’s guilty of owing the IRS tens of thousands of dollars in unpaid taxes and of tax evasion. Brenda Stewart, owner of Denver Sugar/Players changed her plea in federal court Wednesday afternoon from not guilty to guilty to one count of tax evasion. The government moved to dismiss the other 69 counts against her.

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