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Friday Footnotes: Drugs, Man; Millennials Ruined … Accountants?; PwC’s Diversity Report Isn’t Very Diverse | 8.28.20

More Workers Testing Positive for Drugs [CPA Practice Advisor] Relevant, maybe: The rate of workforce drug positivity hit a sixteen-year high in 2019, according to a new analysis released today by Quest Diagnostics, the world’s leading provider of diagnostic information services. Positivity rates in the combined U.S. workforce increased in urine drug tests, climbing to the highest level since 2003 (4.5%) and more than 28% percent higher than the thirty-year low of 3.5 percent recorded between 2010 and 2012.

Pandemic continues to impact accountant, CPA work [Cleveland Jewish News] “This pandemic has truly exposed just how much of our client work is paperless, and I’m proud to say we had a very smooth transition to working from home because our data and records were already positioned for a completely paperless work environment,” said Susan Kowalske, a CPA with two decades of experience in the profession.

Will Covid-19 Change Millennial Minds About Accountants? [Entrepreneur] “Absent a major crisis, the day-to-day value that accountants provide might have been taken for granted. In fact, our research found that a large percentage of those who use outside advisors told us (pre-pandemic) they wouldn’t recommend them to friends, and more than half said they were likely or very likely to explore replacing them entirely,” writes Xero’s Ben Richmond.

CPAs Give Lenders More Virus Relief Loan Accounting Guidance [Bloomberg Tax] Banks, credit unions, and other lenders offering government-backed forgivable loans to businesses should account for Small Business Administration payoffs similar to how they would treat customer prepayments, the American Institute of CPAs said.

IRS digitalization office taking ‘bite-sized’ steps to consolidating legacy systems [Federal News Network] The IRS is building up a successful concept within its procurement shop — incrementally funding IT modernization projects and pulling the plug on those that don’t yield results — to digitize taxpayer services that still rely on paper-based processes.

A Dutch woman now leads KPMG’s global Healthcare practice [] Anna van Poucke has been working for KPMG since 2011, and was appointed a partner in 2013. In the past seven years, she led KPMG’s Healthcare practice in the Netherlands, and under her direction, the industry vertical has seen strong growth in the local market.

Deloitte Foundation Donates $100,000 to AICPA Foundation to Support Accounting Doctoral Students [AICPA] The Deloitte Foundation has donated $100,000 to the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) Foundation in support of its efforts to help CPAs become college professors. The funding is earmarked for the AICPA Foundation’s William (Bill) Ezzell Scholarship program, which annually provides a one-time award of $10,000 to five outstanding accounting Ph.D. candidates who demonstrate significant potential to become mentors for the next generation of CPAs.

PwC releases its first-ever diversity report [Fortune] Women and racially diverse talent now account for 65% of entry-level hires, 7% of whom identify as Black, 12% as Latinx. It’s an improvement from previous years. Although Black and brown partners are still underrepresented—at just 2% and 3%, respectively—racially diverse partners have increased by 8% over the last three years, and PwC’s current partner class is nearly 50% women or racially or ethnically diverse leaders.

Audit firm EY — Incompetent, Negligent or Criminal? [Business Maverick] A highlight from this recommended long-read: “An independent auditor should not simply rely on the word or “assessments” of executives who have a vested interest in obfuscating fraud. This is particularly the case in the context of numerous allegations of such fraud from internal whistle-blowers and financial journalists. EY’s failed audits of Wirecard thus indicate either complicity or negligence, both which paint the firm in a negative light.”