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January 30, 2023

Partners Corner

Partners Corner is a collection of articles, news items, and intel of particular value to accounting firm partners and decision makers. Want to know what’s happening in the accounting industry without the excess of bathroom humor and naughty words Going Concern is notorious for? This is your spot. Think of it like eavesdropping on what your subordinates are saying and thinking. Need to get some ideas for retaining staff don’t include pizza parties? Check here. Please contact Going Concern editors with suggestions of articles you’d like to see if it’s something we haven’t covered yet.

sleeping dog

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: ESG Compliance Heats Up; Deloitte Disclosures; AI Says It Isn’t a Threat | 1.30.23

Deloitte & Touche LLP partners and staffers failed to make financial disclosures required to ensure the independence of their audit work, according to new details from the firm’s 2018 PCAOB inspection. [Bloomberg Tax] Britain’s accounting watchdog said on Monday it will monitor whether auditors were making spot checks on their compliance with environmental, social and […]

cat in a fishbowl with money

Friday Footnotes: Higher Salaries Lead to Higher Fees; EY Auditors Quit; Senator Rags on Greedy Accounting Firms | 1.27.23

Big 4 EY auditors escape potential Wirecard sanctions after leaving profession [Financial Times] Germany’s audit watchdog closed investigations against four current and former EY auditors involved in inspecting collapsed payments firm Wirecard after they handed back their professional licences and left the profession earlier this month. Under German law, Apas can only probe and sanction […]

scissors

EY Germany Gives 40 Partners and 380 Staff the Boot to Boost Profitability After That Whole Wirecard Thing

EY has been tightening the purse strings over the past several months ahead of the big Project Everest split, the vote on which remains delayed and should happen before the end of this quarter. The firm did not hand out mid-year bonuses in December and sources say that travel, training, and even hiring are on […]

Overcoming the Five Stages of Lease Accounting Grief

When Thomson Reuters reported late last year that the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) had proposed an eighth round of changes to lease accounting rules1, accounting and finance execs around the country channeled their inner Charlie Browns with a collective, “Good grief!” The grief is understandable, although we’re not sure how “good” it is. The […]

smushed face cat and alarm clock

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: PwC Partner Banned; Salary Predictions; Public Accountants Have Had It | 1.23.23

Last week someone complained about the format I’ve been using for this linkwrap since I started doing it many, many Mondays ago so just for them, here’s some bullet-free bullet points in lieu of one giant paragraph. Don’t say I never did anything for you. Brazilian retailer and PwC client Americanas filed for bankruptcy, its […]

a Bengal cat in front of laptop

Friday Footnotes: EY Can’t Hire Tech; John Doe Sues the PCAOB; Auditors Can’t Find Torpedoes and Missiles | 1.20.03

Practice Management How firms use stay interviews to boost retention [Journal of Accountancy] Job interviews have long been an essential part of the hiring process. But now, some public accounting firms are turning the lens on themselves. They’re conducting “stay” or “retention” interviews with existing employees. The goal is to understand how they can be […]

Promotion Watch ’23: 36 People at Moss Adams Earned Their Stripes

Moss Adams admitted 36 lucky boys and girls into the partnership last week, topping last year’s new partner class of 34 and more than double the class of 2021. “Our newest group of admitted partners exemplifies our focus on providing holistic services that help our clients succeed,” said Eric Miles, CEO and chairman for Moss Adams. […]

Promotion Watch ’23: 109 Folks at RSM US Will Be Getting New Business Cards

Jan. 1 was a big day for 109 overachievers at RSM US as their long journeys in public accounting finally culminated in being promoted to partner or principal. The class of 2023 has the most members by far in recent years, topping the 88 new partners and principals in the class of 2022, followed by […]

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: EY Wants to Buy; Losers Dump NFTs For Tax Purposes; CPA Demand in 2031 | 1.9.23

Deloitte announced today that Anna Taylor — former tax and economic policy principal advisor to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) — has joined Deloitte’s Washington National Tax practice as the deputy managing principal of the Tax Policy Group. KPMG chief economist Brendan Rynne said the key emerging obstacle that the firm found in its […]

hung over dog

Friday Footnotes: The Metaverse’s First CPA Firm Gets Sued; CPA Exam Blueprints; Mad Mergers | 1.6.23

Wooooo it’s the first Footnotes of 2023! Here’s what’s going on, there’s not a whole lot of it: Long Read FTX Customers Take Enron, WorldCom Path in Legal Fight for Cash [Bloomberg Law] FTX customers going outside bankruptcy court to recover losses from Sam Bankman-Fried’s failed crypto empire are using a legal path that has […]

"mind the gaap" subway markings

FASB Took It Easy in 2022

While the PCAOB has been on a mission to scare the pants off of auditors everywhere in the past year with record fines and scary speeches, the Financial Accounting Standards Board took a much more chill approach to 2022. A Thomson Reuters piece published last week informs us that FASB ended the year having issued […]

dog and cat in Santa hats

Friday Footnotes: EY Cancels Christmas; A Very Sucky PwC Report; Should We Tax Robots? | 12.23.22

Welcome to the last Footnotes of 2022! We appreciate you stopping by as always and hope you get a chance to recharge over the holidays. We will be out of office next week but have scheduled some things to run while we’re gone for those individuals who are severely addicted to accounting shitposts and simply […]

a dry plain symbolizing a talent drought

Wall Street Journal Addresses the Accountant Shortage, Suggests a Recession Could Fix It

I made my entrée into accounting way back in 2007, at the time my job involved a three-hour roundtrip journey across four Bay Area counties and back and I was looking for something a bit closer to home. Shortly after starting in CPA review, I started seeing more and more “For Sale” signs on the […]

Small yellow dog laying on a blue sofa in front of christmas tree

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: Social Class and Career Progression; New GAAP Taxonomy Dropped | 12.19.22

Quick note: there will be no news brief next Monday, we are out for the week and will be running nothing but shitposts, repeats, and tedious top ten lists. Monday Morning Accounting News Brief will resume on January 2, 2023. Please try not to do anything newsworthy between now and then, I have the utmost […]

Friday Footnotes: EY Money Troubles; Fast Food > Public Accounting; From Athlete to Associate; | 12.16.22

Big 4 EY Looks at Backup Plans on Split Amid Higher Costs, Slower Growth [Wall Street Journal] Ernst & Young’s leaders are looking at backup plans for the firm’s split to address rising funding costs and a potential slowdown in growth that could imperil the rich payouts promised to partners, according to people familiar with […]

complaints department sign

Big Clients Bitch to Big 4 Firms About Audit Fees, Get Pissy About Partner Pay

Across the pond, audit fees are up (22% in four years) and apparently the companies paying these fees are unhappy about it. Financial Times has seen a letter written from CFOs at FTSE 100 companies in the UK to their Big 4 auditors that says “[it is] difficult for us to sit quietly as Big […]

dogs cuddled in a blanket together

Friday Footnotes: A (Fake) Day in the Life at Deloitte; DYNAMIC Merger For Grant Thornton; CPA Awareness | 12.9.22

News Trump Organization found guilty on all counts of criminal tax fraud [CNN] A Manhattan jury has found two Trump Organization companies guilty on multiple charges of criminal tax fraud and falsifying business records connected to a 15-year scheme to defraud tax authorities by failing to report and pay taxes on compensation for top executives. […]

businessman playing with army men toys

PwC Declares a Poaching War on EY

As EY continues to hammer out the details of the audit and consulting split, PwC has set its sights on adding EY partners to The New Equation. Lots of EY partners. In October, PwC Global Chairman and 2012 Going Concern Hottest Accounting Firm Leader winner Bob Moritz told the Financial Times in no uncertain terms […]

dog snuggled in a blanket

Friday Footnotes: Why People Leave Public Accounting; Audit Workloads Up; Terrorist Clients (Literally) | 12.2.22

Slow news week this week. We managed to find some things worth mentioning anyway as we are experts in slow news weeks (698 weeks and counting!), enjoy. Talent Why People Leave Public Accounting [CPA Journal] Writes Edward Mendlowitz, CPA/PFS, ABV: There are many reasons why CPAs decide to leave public accounting firms. Based on my […]

a render of a business suit army

BDO UK Spreads the Load

FT had an interesting story yesterday about a situation across the pond: average BDO UK partner pay fell 15 percent to £647,000 (USD$794k) because a hiring spree took a bite out of profits. Last year, BDO UK partners walked away with more than even EY and KPMG partners. They aren’t worried about it though, the […]

a dog in fall leaves

Friday Footnotes: How EY Fights Poaching; Lack of Staff Is Closing Doors; Accounting to Biglaw? | 11.25.22

Big 4 FRC to fine Deloitte £440k over 2018 audit [Accountancy Today] The Financial Reporting Council’s Audit Quality team has issued a notice of a proposed sanction on Deloitte, proposing a regulatory penalty of £440k after it was determined that the Big Four firm failed to comply with the auditing framework in its audit of […]

kitten in autumn leaves

Friday Footnotes: Retired EY Partners Hate on the Split; It’s a Raid!; ‘An Alphabet Soup of Technology’ | 11.18.22

Big 4 EY split threatens to weaken both sides of firm, say retired partners [Financial Times] More than 150 retired EY partners have written to the accounting firm’s leadership objecting to the radical plan to split its consulting and audit businesses. In a three-page memo seen by the Financial Times, the retired US partners say […]

a successful accounting practice owner sleeping soundly under his stacks of money

Five Ways to Incorporate Profitability Into Your Practice

It’s official, we have reached the exciting future 1950s sci-fi magazines promised us. We have all the world’s knowledge in a tiny device that fits in our pockets, can get just about anything delivered in two hours or less, and nowadays you don’t even need your hand to open a glove box anymore, just your […]

a bulldog and a military man

Friday Footnotes: Behemoth Big 4 Firms Get Behemothier; Audits Get Harder; Eliminate Clients! | 11.11.22

Ed. note: if you like accounting news, which you clearly do because you are reading this, we encourage you to sign up for our newsletter for even more accounting news. Oh and a hearty thank you for your service to the veterans out there. Hopefully some of you got the day off. Hiring ‘There’s definitely an […]

Cute cat with autumn squash and pumpkin

Friday Footnotes: PwC Does Some Things; Bad Client Dumps EY; ‘Going From Balloon Animals to Accountancy’ | 11.4.22

Footnotes is a weekly wrap-up of all the news in and around the accounting profession, published every Friday at 5 p.m. Eastern. To get more headlines delivered on the regular, subscribe to our newsletter. Big 4 PwC Retirees Get Early Approval for $267 Million Pension Deal [Bloomberg Tax] PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP’s $267 million settlement with retirees […]

A happy Halloween dog

Friday Footnotes: Rettig Is Out at IRS; KPMG and Deloitte Suck at Auditing; Desperate For Accountants | 10.28.22

Sorry Footnotes is late today, it won’t happen again. Our newsletter is always on time. Talent Iowa addresses accountant shortage, expands eligibility for state jobs [KCRG] Accountants and auditors with the Office of Auditor of State no longer need a four-year degree. “There’s currently a nationwide shortage of accountants and auditors, and Iowa’s no exception,” […]

a judgmental old cat

Friday Footnotes: KPMG Is Twice as Bad as Other Firms; Upskill or Die; Hella M&A | 10.21.22

Big 4 KPMG flunks US overseas audit inspections twice as often as rivals [Financial Times] US regulators were twice as likely to find flaws in audits conducted by the overseas affiliates of KPMG than those of any other Big Four accounting firm, an analysis of inspection data shows. The findings raise further questions over KPMG’s […]

Promotion Watch ’22: BDO USA Gives 69 People Fancy New Titles

People who know, know BDO USA recently promoted 49 people to partner and 20 people to principal for fiscal year 2023. The class of FY 2023 is the same size as the class of FY 2022—and one of the largest in the firm’s history. Among the 69 new partners and principals: 22: The number of […]

a dog in a party hat

Friday Footnotes: Big 4 Nixes Legal Practices; EY Looks the Other Way; Auditors Get Lectured Again | 10.14.22

Big 4 The drunken Big Four partners who are paid $1m+[eFinancialCareers] Combined with other recent incidents, including the tragic case of Michael Brockie, a 28-year-old PWC audit manager who lost a large portion of his brain following a fall after a drunken work outing, and the death of Aishwarya Venkatachalam, a junior at EY in […]

a happy dog in a car

Friday Footnotes: Accounting’s Big Lie; BDO Poaching; EY Partners Get Whipped | 10.07.22

Must Read Accounting’s Big Lie — and How to Fix It [Project on Government Oversight] A colossal conflict of interest compromises the auditing of public companies and the financial security of everyone who depends on them. The Project On Government Oversight is planning a conference on what to do about it. The following is meant […]

Promotion Watch ’22: KPMG Admits 186 to Partnership

Now that summer has turned to fall and Deloitte, PwC, and EY have all had their comp discussions with employees, released their global revenue numbers for 2022, and deified all of their new partners and principals, it is KPMG SEASON! The firm with a Sept. 30 fiscal year-end has begun comp talks with Klynveldians (we’ll […]

a spooked little kitten

Friday Footnotes: Opinions!; EY’s Blockchain Aspirations; KPMG Junior Reprimanded | 9.30.22

Psst. While you’re here, have you thought about getting on our newsletter? No? Alright. Big 4 Average income of Deloitte’s partners in UK and Switzerland tops £1m [The Guardian] Partners at Deloitte in the UK and Switzerland will receive an average income of more than £1m each for the second year in a row, after […]

a rich dog

Friday Footnotes: Accounting Salaries on the Rise; PwC Sets a Record; Succession Suggestions? | 9.23.22

Psst! While we have you…get on our newsletter list if you want more headlines like these. And have a good weekend! That’s an order. Salaries Salaries in Finance & Accounting on the Rise as Executives Adapt to Fluctuating Market Pressures, Says New Report [Randstad] According to a new report from Randstad USA, finance and accounting […]

Promotion Watch ’22: Deloitte Admits 279 New Partners and Principals

Deloitte recently unveiled its latest class of overachievers, which includes 107 new partners and 172 new principals for fiscal year 2023. This newest class is a biggun compared to others in recent years—Deloitte admitted 169 new partners and principals for FY 2022, 125 for FY 2021, and 150 for FY 2020. Want more numbers? OK, […]

an orange cat with a leaf on its nose

Friday Footnotes: Screw the Office; Auditor Sues EY For Doing Her Job; IRS Levels Up | 9.16.22

Big 4 Deloitte plays both sides of the field in Mercedes-Benz case [Australian Financial Review] Mercedes-Benz dealers have discovered long-time auditor Deloitte was banking huge fees from them while secretly working with the German parent company to write reports that would “disguise” the damage a switch in the business model would do to dealers’ profit […]

Promotion Watch ’22: Here Are the 37 Newest Marcum Partners

If the 2022 new partner class at Marcum looks unusually large, it is. Why? Because of all the Friedmans. The class of new partners includes professionals who joined the firm as part of Friedman LLP’s merger into Marcum less than a week ago, on September 1. Up until now, last year’s class of 29 new […]

Promotion Watch ’22: Baker Tilly Churned Out a Record 46 New Partners

The new partner class of 2022 is one for the record books at Baker Tilly, as 46 BTers got their club memberships recently from CEO Alan Whitman. Baker Tilly says in a press release that it’s the largest new partner class at the firm to date, which we have every reason to believe given that […]

a cool dog cruising in a car

Friday Footnotes: Where the Audit Jobs Are; Big BDO Hires; A New Gig For PwC Alum | 9.9.22

Supply and Demand New York First in Projected Growth of Auditor and Accountant Jobs: Weekly Stat [CFO] Projections on four position categories — accountants and auditors; credit analysts; financial managers; and financial and investment analysts, financial risk specialists, financial specialists, and all others — reveal that despite a global shift in workflow and flexibility, the […]

a dog in worker clothes holding an American flag in its mouth

Friday Footnotes: EY Split Drags Out; Advisory Firm Defrauds Clients; Student Loan Forgiveness and Taxes | 9.2.22

Ed. note: Although Going Concern observes Labor Day because our handlers are not monsters, we’ll be back Monday as usual. See you then and have a wonderful weekend (hopefully it’s a three-day one for at least some of you). Firm Watch EY’s talks on potential split to continue into Autumn [City A.M.] EY’s talks on […]

Friday Footnotes: KPMG Downsizes (Office Space); CPA CPA CPA; Some Good News on Diversity | 8.26.22

Ed. note: apologies to the individual who criticized last week’s Footnotes headline for being too clickbaity and scary, our bad. This week’s consciously informative headline is just for you, buddy. While you’re here, allow us to pester you to sign up for our newsletter to get accounting headlines twice a week. Happy weekend! Big 4 […]

Promotion Watch ’22: Grant Thornton Admits 38 New Partners and Principals

Plenty of new promotion purple roses were handed out at Grant Thornton on Aug. 1, as the firm celebrated its largest class of new partners, principals, and managing directors in GT’s history. The 96 new PPMDs in the class of 2022 surpasses the 87 in last year’s class, which had been Grant Thornton’s largest ever. […]

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: PwC Auditor Hurt; Deloitte Tops a List; EY Writes the Treasury | 8.22.22

PwC is being sued by a 28-year-old auditor who claims he suffered a serious head injury after attending a work event that involved an “excessive” drinking game of pub golf. The Securities and Exchange Commission is gearing up to fine many of Wall Street’s biggest banks a total of one billion dollars; the banks’ employees […]

Friday Footnotes: EY Partners’ Snazzy Secret Meeting; PwC Talks Layoffs; Merger Mania! | 8.19.22

Ed. note: trying out a little something new for this week’s Footnotes. We’re adding accounting firm mergers & acquisitions to the weekly news as they’re happening with such frequency and regular Footnotes readers will notice the news is now sorted by topic. Neat! Don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter for more headlines, or […]

Promotion Watch ’22: Forvis Admits First Class of New Partners and Principals; All Have Forward Vision

Forvis, the oddly named love child of BKD and DHG that was born on June 1, announced its inaugural class of new partners and principals, as well as new managing directors, last month. As far as we know, the 21 partners, two principals, and 38 managing directors in this year’s class all have eyes in […]

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: Yes, There’s Still a Shortage; PwC Probe; Puppers Hate EY | 8.15.22

Since February, 29,500 EY employees have gotten the firm to pay their commuting costs, all dependent care costs and all pet care costs so they can be back in the office, these reimbursements totaled $22 million for the year to EY’s FY year-end in July. The Times Record in Maine writes about the accountant shortage: […]

Friday Footnotes: Crippling Staff Shortages in Consulting; Hold Auditors Accountable; AICPA is Mad | 8.12.22

Ed. note: fans of accounting headlines are encouraged to sign up for our newsletter to get headlines delivered to your inbox twice a week. Looking for a remote accounting job? We encourage you to sign up to get job alerts for remote accounting positions from our friends at Accountingfly. Now, the news. How to follow up […]

Promotion Watch ’22: Plante Moran Adds 29 New Partners

Fortune magazine’s favorite accounting firm promoted 29 new partners across eight service lines and 15 offices at the beginning of August. The new partner class of 2022 at Plante Moran is the firm’s largest in the last several years, surpassing the 24 in 2021, 25 in 2020, 16 in 2019, and 15 in 2018. Here […]

A Word on the Persistent Low Morale of the Audit Profession

We received the following email from a distraught and burnt out Big 4 auditor in the Southeast: The level of morale in the [XYZ] office is at an all time low. Discussion with low level staff, through managers, have yielded the same opinion of overwhelming expectations without the needed support from the firm. They want […]

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: PwC Gets Fined; Big 4: What’s the Scam?; The IRS Straps Up | 8.8.22

Across the pond, PwC has been fined $2.12 million after the firm failed to properly challenge UK telecom group BT once a half-a-billion pound fraud was discovered in BT’s Italian operations: “The sanctions imposed in this case, where certain elements of the adjustments following a fraud were not subject to the required level of professional […]

Friday Footnotes: A World Without Accountants; GAO Finds a Big Mistake; ‘Fazbie’ | 8.5.22

Ed. note: are you obsessed with accounting news? Yeah, us too. Sign up for our newsletter to get headlines in your inbox twice a week. Looking for a remote accounting job? We encourage you to sign up to get job alerts for remote accounting positions from our friends at Accountingfly. If the world had no accountants […]

Spreadsheets Suck, Say Clients

We all have that one friend whose door is always open to us. This person has been with you through all the ups and downs, and uneventful middle parts between. You trust this person because they’ve never let you down, their advice is always solid. What if clients thought of you as that friend? What […]

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: EY Exploitation; Ethics Training Sucks; Stick Around in Public? | 8.1.22

Happy Monday! Here are your headlines. SOX turned 20 over the weekend. SEC Chair Gary Gensler had some things to say about Sarbanes-Oxley’s past, present, and future. Tim Ryan on leadership: “Too often, I find in corporate America, we go into the huddle where we agree on a pass play but not on what routes […]

Friday Footnotes: KPMG Accounts For Half of All Audit Fines; LGBT Accountants Dip; EY in Big Debt? | 7.29.22

Ed. note: fans of accounting news — all two of you — are encouraged to sign up for our newsletter to get headlines delivered to your inbox twice a week on Tuesday and Friday. Check out today’s newsletter here. Looking for a remote accounting job? We encourage you to sign up to get job alerts […]

Is It Time to Renovate Your Practice?

Remember those home renovation reality shows that were all over the place in the 2010s? The formula was always the same: find the jankiest, most run-down home on the market, gut it, and somehow end up with a beautiful property that more than made up for the renovation costs upon sale. The “before” homes are […]

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: EY Sucks at Auditing; Accounting Headaches; KPMG Partner Banned | 7.25.22

Some headlines to get you started on this fine Monday: KPMG partner banned from accounting after misleading regulator over Carillion. KPMG fined £14.4 million after the firm admitted to providing false and misleading information to its regulator during spot checks on audits of construction firm Carillion and outsourcing firm Regenersis. The spread of ESG labels […]

a very ugly dog

Friday Footnotes: New Managers Share Wisdom; KPMG Praised??; PwC Creeps Leave | 7.22.22

Ed. note: Footnotes is published every Friday at 5 p.m. Sign up for our newsletter to get accounting headlines delivered to your inbox twice a week. Oh, and if you are looking for a remote accounting job, we encourage you to sign up to get job alerts for remote accounting positions from our friends at Accountingfly. […]

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: Grant Thornton’s ‘Serious Failings’; PwC Won’t Split; IRS Zoom Calls? | 7.18.22

In an interview with the Financial Times, PwC’s Bob Moritz said that keeping audit and advisory arms together was essential to attract staff and that the benefits of the model outweighed the difficulty of managing the risk of conflicts of interest between the two divisions. Are accounting firms walking back remote work? Fire at a […]

Friday Footnotes: Sleazy PwC Partner Leaves; No You Can’t Claim a Boob Job; PCAOB Scholars | 7.15.22

PwC partner accused of rating female staff leaves firm [Australian Financial Review] A PwC partner who allegedly held male-only events with colleagues where they rated the attractiveness of women in their office and visited strip clubs has left the firm. Audit watchdog to overhaul UK corporate governance code [Financial Times] The UK’s corporate governance code […]

a corgi stealing food off the counter

Blind Item: California Firms Are Paying California Salaries to Poach Midwestern Public Accountants (UPDATE)

Are you a public accountant in a LCOL or MCOL Midwestern city? Put down the beer, open your ears, and whip out your wallet for this one. A source tells us California firms are setting their sights on comparatively lower cost of living Midwest cities to fill their vacancies. And they’re doing it not to […]

a pair of pensive people

Are ‘Strong Leadership, Agile Working, and a People-Centric Value Proposition’ on Your List of Must Haves at Work?

UK businesses within the accounting industry are understaffed by 22% and leaders everywhere are busy telling each other the things accounting professionals — particularly the younger generation — are hungry for at work. Fewer hours? Better money? Not getting scammed out of accrued PTO with a switch to “unlimited” vacation? NAH. What we really need […]

a dog in bed with an alarm clock

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: KPMG Doesn’t Care; Audit Partners on Inflation; Record Payouts | 7.11.22

KPMG’s global leadership has been accused by staff of failing to act on written complaints about the conduct of the chief executive of the accounting firm’s business in the United Arab Emirates, writes Financial Times. ICYMI: 950 PwC UK partners scored £1m payouts, a first for any Big 4 firm, and The Guardian made sure […]

a cat taking drugs

Friday Footnotes: PwC Partner$; The Ketamine Accountant; Deloitte Mexico Missed Some Stuff | 7.8.22

Wirecard’s former top accountant admits forging documents for KPMG special audit [Financial Times] Wirecard’s ex-head of accounting has admitted to forging documents requested by KPMG during a special audit, ahead of a trial that is set for later this year, according to people familiar with the matter. Stephan von Erffa is one of three defendants […]

Promotion Watch ’22: EY Admits 1,033 New Partners Across the Globe

Move over, EY new partner class of 2021. There’s a much larger class of brand-new rainmakers at the firm this year: The EY organization announces that 1,033 people have been promoted to partner across the globe, the largest ever cohort of new partners. Women and the Assurance service line represent 32% and 33% of this […]

Friday Footnotes: XOXO, Accountants; PwC Wants Tax Cuts; KPMG Stacks Partners | 7.1.22

Accountants are voted the best kissers in Britain ahead of doctors and nurses while civil servants, bankers and lawyers are rated as the worst [Daily Mail] Often ridiculed as boring beancounters, accountants have surprisingly been voted the best kissers – ahead of doctors, nurses and engineers. And the worst are civil servants, bankers and lawyers, […]

various marijuana products

CPAs Should Get Into Weed, Says CPA Into Weed (As a Business, That Is)

“Cannabusiness” is booming and obnoxious cutesy phrase aside, it’s a $25 billion-and-growing (heh) industry with more potential than a fresh cart of Blue Dream on a Saturday night. Clever CPAs who get in on the ground will not only open themselves up to nearly unlimited billing potential (yay), they’ll be helping cannabis businesses navigate the […]

punctuation bubbles on a grey background

Who’s Smarter, Big 4 Accountants or Industry Accountants? A Debate

Yesterday we retweeted an observation about how the smartest people work at Big 4 firms hoping for some good discussion and discussion did in fact ensue. Decent discussion, actually. It warms my cold black heart to know that at least in our little corner of the internet people with differing opinions are still capable of […]

a man and his dog not reading accounting news

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: PwC UK Raises; ESG = $$$; Mid-Tier Tech Sucks | 6.27.22

Crypto has crashed–oops sorry, there’s a “crypto winter” and apparently that’s important for CPAs to be aware of. Mid-tier firms have crappy technology. “Deloitte Consulting Analyst got minimum 15% base increase since May 2021” is something relevant to PwC UK staff getting a 9% pay bump to offset cost of living according to one Redditor […]

a white cat and a fan of money

Friday Footnotes: A CPA Grindset We Can Get Behind; The Klynveld Krypto Team; Firms Still Desperate (For People) | 6.24.22

Accounting Firm EY Grapples With Partner Pay, Bear Market in Breakup [Wall Street Journal] Ernst & Young’s leaders, trying to persuade partners to split up the firm, said windfalls would be spread evenly, but a bear market threatens to cut the value of a potential initial public offering of its consulting business, according to an […]

a man buried in paper holding an I Quit sign

Being Home During Lockdown Shifted Accountants’ Priorities, Says Lady

Kristy Illuzzi, CPA, CGMA of International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) on why the Great Resignation is affecting the profession so acutely: I think the Great Resignation is interesting in that it has impacted almost every sector of our economy and every profession in some way, and it’s no different in the accounting industry. I think […]

a scruffy dog standing on train tracks looking adorable

Friday Footnotes: Accounting AI Explodes; SOX Compliance Sux; KPMG Gets on a List | 6.17.22

The 2022 Client Advisory Services (CAS) Benchmark Survey is now open for participation [CPA.com] Participation in the CAS Benchmark Survey provides an opportunity for you to work on your business – first, by reviewing the data about your practice in preparation to take the survey, and later, when you can review your practice’s data compared […]

Promotion Watch ’22: PwC Admits 283 New Partners and Principals

PwC will be swimming in new partners and principals on July 1, the day when members of one of the largest classes in recent memory at the firm officially earn their stripes. Of the 283 members of the class of 2022 at PwC, 169 will be principals and 114 will be partners. It’s the biggest […]

Hybrid Work Only Makes It More Obvious How Much Going to the Office Sucks

While there are small pockets of American white collar workers who would welcome a respite from screaming kids and incontinent dogs at home (shout-out to a certain Going Concern team member always regaling us with shitty stories on Zoom calls), a good majority of people have realized that skipping the commute and making your own […]

a dog on a sunny beach

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: Where Are the Ethics?; The SEC is Watching | 6.13.22

Financial Times boldly suggests that because of constant financial scandals accounting programs need to do a better job of teaching students not to screw up. “These scandals have intensified concerns that a poorly developed approach to teaching behavioral, as opposed to technical, skills is reducing ethical standards and professional independence,” writes FT. Meanwhile in Canada, […]

a dog focused on a treat in a hand

Friday Footnotes: EY Buffs PE Practice; A Thirst for Integrity; “Everyone Feels KPMG Is 4th” | 6.10.22

SEC Acting Chief Accountant Cautions Against “Checklist Compliance” Approach to Auditor Independence [JD Supra] SEC Acting Chief Accountant Paul Munter re-emphasized the SEC’s focus on auditor independence in his June 8 statement on “The Critical Importance of the General Standard of Auditor Independence and an Ethical Culture for the Accounting Profession.” This latest statement follows […]

Finding/Retaining Staff and Challenges Working With the IRS Are Top PITAs for CPA Firms, Says AICPA Survey

Small firms think ‘challenges when working with the IRS’ is a bigger PITA than trying to find and retain talent according to the results of the 2022 AICPA Private Companies Practice Section (PCPS) CPA Firm Top Issues Survey released by the AICPA this week. Via Journal of Accountancy: The IRS issue didn’t resonate only with […]

a neat work from home setup

Corporate Overlords Try to Scare Us Back Into the Office With Figures on How Much WFH is Costing You

As we watch gas prices tick higher and higher, commercial lessors and middle managers everywhere are anxious to get people back in chairs. Their chairs. Gross, old, shared-space, contains-the-farts-of-coworkers-past chairs. Nothing at all like the luxurious gaming chair your firm WFH stipend covered, though let’s be honest that one is harboring some ghost farts too. […]

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Friday Footnotes: Big 4 Pride; KPMG Gets Snubbed; EY Goes on a Poaching Spree | 6.3.22

Accountant Finds Out Client Has “Skeletons In The Closet”, Gets The IRS Involved And Makes Him Lose Everything [Bored Panda] It was posted on Reddit so obviously it must be true. How a New Accounting Rule Is Making Bank Earnings Go Wild [Wall Street Journal] The new accounting standard, known as current expected credit loss, […]

CPAs: 3 Ways Direct Indexing Can Help Your Clients Level Up Their Charitable Gifting

Direct indexing is an investment strategy that can help your clients take charitable gifting to the next level, potentially offsetting gains and reducing tax liabilities in ways that improve their after-tax performance—and possibly even lead to better outcomes for the charity or recipient. Using direct indexing for charitable gifting (and for other things, too) is […]

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Friday Footnotes: EY Gets Extra Empathetic; Broke KPMG Partner Sues; Auditor Pay Cuts? | 5.27.22

Accounting Giant EY Created A Chief Wellbeing Officer To Uplift And Empower Their People [Forbes] EY investing in that empathetic leadership everyone loves so much. Bankrupt former KPMG partner sues law firm over job loss [Financial Times] A former KPMG partner who went bankrupt after investing in French ski chalets is suing law firm Herbert […]

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Friday Footnotes: Which Firm Puts in the Most Hours?; Clients Pay for the Talent War; Spotting Burnout | 5.20.22

Boring No More: Accountants, Auditors See Themselves as Creative, Curious and Adventurous, Study Shows [PR Newswire] Creative, curious and adventurous may not be traits normally associated with accountants and auditors, but a recent study shows that’s just how a growing number of industry professionals see themselves. The research – conducted by leading software provider Caseware […]

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Friday Footnotes: KPMG’s Idea of a Fun Summer; IRS Eats Their Homework; Downsized GT Downsizes | 5.13.22

Junior KPMG auditor ‘should not lose his home’ for misleading regulator, says tribunal [Financial Times] A former junior KPMG auditor should not receive a fine so large it could force him to sell his matrimonial home, a tribunal has said. The UK accounting regulator asked the industry tribunal to fine Pratik Paw £50,000 and ban […]

a cat wearing sunglasses

Friday Footnotes: Firms on India Hiring Spree; PCAOB Heads Overseas; PwC Lets You See Your Family This Summer | 5.6.22

Mesa grandma, 25-year-old accountant share love of Phoenix Suns [Arizona’s Family] JoAnne Ralph and Ben Barchilon have a special bond, and it all started with their love of the Phoenix Suns. “It’s just wonderful to have another grandson,” said Ralph. “It upsets my granddaughter because she says ‘I’m not sharing you!’ And I said, yes […]

CPAs: Make Direct Indexing Your Estate Planning Secret Weapon

Traditionally, the role of accounting professionals in estate planning has been tertiary at best, with clients consulting CPAs only on the tax implications of select decisions—or simply leaving them out of the process altogether.  As you’re certainly sick of hearing by now, however, today’s most successful CPAs are taking on more advisory functions, with one […]

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Shape Up With This Five-Step Plan For Finance Department Fitness

Feeling a bit pudgy these days? You’re not alone. In one recent survey by WebMD, 54% of respondents reported having gained weight due to coronavirus lockdowns. It makes sense: people were not going to the gym, many were subsisting on takeout (OK, basically all of us), and we weren’t getting in the daily steps one […]

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Friday Footnotes: EY and KPMG This Week’s Big 4 Lawsuits; Eliminate Accounting Majors?; Auditors Fire Messy Municipal | 4.29.22

New Deloitte report: working women face alarmingly high levels of burnout despite shifting work arrangements, rise in hybrid working [PR Newswire] Widespread burnout and lack of flexible work continues to hinder progress in supporting working women, according to the latest Deloitte report, “Women @ Work 2022: A Global Outlook” released today. The research reveals that […]

a dog in grass

Friday Footnotes: 43% Plan to Quit; Earf Day and ESG; Deloitte Director Stole $3m to Flex | 4.22.22

Ed. note: Happy belated 420 Earth Day, everyone! In honor of the one day a year we recognize the detrimental impact humans have on our home rock, we’re including a couple relevant links on performative environmentalism as it relates to the accounting industry and financial reporting below. Firms and audit committees focus on ESG for […]

4 Ways CPAs Can Explain the Tax Benefits of Direct Indexing to Clients

Pop quiz, CPAs: What do you tell a client who asks you about the tax benefits of direct indexing? If your answer is “Pretend I need to go to the bathroom and hope I can get one of my advisor friends on the phone to explain it to me in time,” this article is for […]

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State of the Accounting Profession 2022 Via the AICPA Trends Report

As I snarkily mentioned last week, the AICPA has finally released its much-anticipated 2021 Trends in the Supply of Accounting Graduates and the Demand for Public Accounting Recruits (or Trends, for short) report [PDF here], a behemoth data dump of accounting industry stats first released in 1971 and released every two years since 2009. We’re […]

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Friday Footnotes: Client Hid ‘Damning’ Audit; Predictions for the Profession; Accounting Firm Gets Compromised | 4.15.22

Ed. note: Happy almost Easter to those who celebrate, happy 11th birthday today to my cat Cash Money (no, I did not purposely track down a cat born on tax day when I adopted him from Humane Rescue Alliance in DC 11 years ago), and a very happy April 18th to those of you who […]

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Friday Footnotes: Firms Make Progress on Diversity; EY Growth Plan; PIZZA PARTY! | 3.8.22

CPA firms show progress in diversity amid pipeline challenges [Journal of Accountancy] The AICPA finally got around to releasing their 2021 Trends report, which we’ll dissect shortly. In the meantime, here’s a tidbit: The profession’s efforts to encourage diversity, equity, and inclusion delivered progress with a rise of almost 5 percentage points (a change from […]

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Here’s Everything We Know So Far About 2022 Accounting Salary Projections

As of February 2022, inflation in the United States has hit a 40-year high at 7.9%; the last time inflation was this bad, many of you weren’t even alive so yay, think of this like Halley’s Comet, some day in the distant future you’ll get to say “I was there!” You don’t need us to […]

Updated List of Accounting Firm Average Partner Profits In the UK For 2021

Hey Grant Thornton UK partners, how y’all livin’? Probably not too bad these days, now that the average profit for those of you in the club went up 34% to £611,000 in 2021. With GT releasing its 2021 average partner pay yesterday, as well as firm profits and net revenue, we’ve updated our list of […]

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Friday Footnotes: No Foolin’ Here; 18,000 New Accounting Jobs; Skills Auditors Need NOW to Be Future-Ready | 4.1.22

Ed. note: forgive us, we lack the bandwidth to come up with an April Fool’s prank today. For your reading pleasure, you can reminisce on the time we hid the entire site behind a (fake) Bitcoin paywall for a few hours on April Fool’s Day 2014 and proceeded to get cussed out by readers and […]

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Friday Footnotes: ‘KPMG Did Not Know What They Were Doing’; Are You Boring?; PCAOB Warns About Confirmations | 3.25.22

These are the 5 most ‘boring’ — and exciting — jobs in the world, according to a recent study [CNBC] You’ll be happy to hear accounting made #2 on the most boring list. Don’t feel bad, MY job ranked #3 most exciting and I assure you it absolutely is not, I write about accounting after […]

Arthur Andersen & Co.

Study: Ex-Arthur Andersen Audit Partners Do Not Deserve to Get Shredded

When you hear the name Arthur Andersen, the first thing that usually comes to mind is … well … you know. But here’s some good news associated with the Andersen name: audit partners who worked at Arthur Andersen during its collapse and who currently work in the Big 4 provide higher-quality audits than audit partners […]

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Friday Footnotes: The Salary Problem Catches Up to Firms; Deloitte Changes Its Mind; KPMG Punished (Again) | 3.18.22

Accounting Faces Reckoning After Years of Sluggish Pay Growth [Bloomberg Law] Gasp! Asking for time off? WELL I NEVER! The shift in power toward workers and away from employers has forced businesses to meet demands for more time off, remote work, and flexible schedules—not just wages—said Paul McDonald, senior executive director for staffing firm Robert […]

An Accounting Firm Gets Phished: A Play In Two Acts

The other day — OK it was actually 12 days ago — we got a random email in our editor inbox. This is not uncommon, said inbox serves as the garbage disposal into which reader complaints go. Just kidding, we love feedback. Really. The editor inbox is a hub for reader comments, advertising requests, story […]

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Friday Footnotes: PwC’s Turn For a Probe; Accounting Professor Does a Naughty; The IRS is Hiring | 3.11.22

‘Big Four’ Targeted Again in U.K.—PwC Becomes Latest Subject of Investigations [Bloomberg Tax] Paul Brehony of Signature Litigation LLP looks at the growing number of investigations by the U.K. tax authority into historic audit failures by the “Big Four” firms, and discusses the prospects for success of proposed major reforms to the audit regime. The […]

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Friday Footnotes: Deloitte’s Naughty Workpapers; Audit Reform Critics; Clients Getting Dropped Like Mics | 3.4.22

Deloitte considers Russia pull out as pressure grows on western firms to exit [Financial News] Deloitte is considering pulling out of Russia, becoming the first Big Four audit firm to do so as pressure grows on Western companies to cut ties with the country following its invasion of Ukraine. The firm is reviewing its “business […]

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Friday Footnotes: KPMG’s ‘Scandal-Ridden’ Crisis; PwC Cheats; Give Me a Straight Answer | 2.25.22

Why KPMG’s Culture Crisis is Symptomatic of a Broken Audit Industry [International Policy Digest] A disciplinary tribunal filed against auditing giant KPMG has unearthed an internal survey conducted between 2016-17, revealing a veritable crisis of culture among the firm’s ranks. Although KPMG may purport to prioritize the ideals of integrity and quality in all their […]