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Friday Footnotes: Costly Audit Mistakes; No Bonus For You!; Accounting Education Lags Behind | 03.19.21

Bonuses Are Targeted in U.K. Crackdown on Audit Scandals [Bloomberg] Top executives at companies hit by accounting scandals could lose their bonuses under U.K. proposals for beefed-up regulation after a wave of corporate collapses including Carillion Plc and travel firm Thomas Cook Group Plc.

UK audit reform set to cost businesses more than £430m a year [Financial Times] Businesses face hundreds of millions of pounds in extra costs every year under planned reforms of the UK’s audit and corporate governance regime to crack down on fraud and “rewards for failure” among executives. An analysis of the impact assessment by the Financial Times published alongside the white paper consultation into the proposals found that more than £430m could be added to business costs under the government’s preferred options.

Many College Accounting Programs Need to Update Their Curricula to Keep Pace with a Changing Profession: AICPA-NASBA Report [AICPA] There are major gaps in college accounting education today, with fewer than half of all programs teaching emerging topics, such as IT governance and cybersecurity, according to a new report by the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) and National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA).

LinkedIn tips for accountants and finance professionals [Journal of Accountancy] Expertise and credibility are among the biggest reasons people do business with accountants, according to Ty Hendrickson, CPA, founder of The Sales Seed, a consulting and training company for accountants, based in Lexington, Ky.

Charge: Kentucky man told IRS he was a certified public accountant but wasn’t. [Lexington Herald Leader] A federal grand jury indicted Charles Marshall Stivers Thursday on charges of putting false information in a document he submitted to the Internal Revenue Service. Stivers, of Manchester, was licensed as a CPA in Kentucky in 1989, but in October 2015, the State Board of Accountancy permanently revoked his license, according to the indictment.

Lawmakers float bill to ban SEC gathering of audit trail data [Pensions & Investments] A group of House Republicans introduced a bill to prohibit the Securities and Exchange Commission from requiring personally identifiable information be collected under the reporting requirements for its consolidated audit trail. The bill — Protecting Investors’ Personally Identifiable Information Act — would “require the SEC to obtain investors’ sensitive information from their stockbroker if the SEC needs that information instead of automatically storing every investor’s sensitive personal data in the database,” said Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga., the bill’s sponsor, in a news release Thursday. “That would protect investors’ privacy and significantly reduce cyberrisk, while still ensuring that the SEC can access the information it needs.”

EY faces questions over alleged idea to abort KPMG’s Wirecard audit [Financial Times] EY denied on Friday that it had ever suggested a forensic audit into Wirecard’s Asian operations by rival KPMG should be terminated, as German MPs grilled the Big Four firm over its role in the accounting scandal.

Tax Preparer Charged with COVID-19 Loan Fraud [Department of Justice] According to the allegations in the information, Leonel Rivero, 35, of Miami, owned a tax-preparation business and submitted approximately 118 fraudulent PPP loan applications on behalf of himself and his accomplices. Combined, the 118 PPP loan applications sought more than $2.3 million in PPP loans. On each PPP loan application, Rivero allegedly falsified the applicant’s prior-year income and expenses and submitted fraudulent IRS tax forms. Rivero and his accomplices allegedly received approximately $975,582 in PPP loans as a result of the fraud.