Friday Footnotes: Is KPMG a Bunch of Bullies?; Deloitte’s Karen Problem; Firm-Mandated Jabs | 4.23.21

Deloitte reveals number of staff complaints [Financial Review] Consultancy giant Deloitte has become the first major professional services firm in the country to voluntarily disclose the number of workplace investigations conducted each year – roughly 15 a year over the past three years – with the pressure now on rival firms to disclose similar data.

Can accounting firms mandate vaccines? [Journal of Accountancy] In general, U.S. employers can mandate their workers get vaccinated, but most companies are encouraging rather than enforcing, unless they are in industries such as health care or food services where workers deal directly with a vulnerable public. Most CPAs are already working from home, making public accounting firms less inclined to issue such an order.

Ex-Deloitte Auditor Faces Disciplinary Action Over Steinhoff [Bloomberg] The Dutch Authority for the Financial Markets accuses Patrick Seinstra of failing “to obtain sufficient and appropriate audit evidence from the annual accounts,” according to papers from the hearing.

KPMG’s catalogue of sexual harassment, bullying complaints [Financial Review] Consulting giant KPMG received almost 100 workplace complaints between 2014 and 2019 with allegations of bullying and sexual harassment growing or remaining steady over that period, raising questions about how widespread the conduct is and what the firm is doing to address it.

Senior KPMG Executive scrutinised amid M&C Saatchi investigation [Consultancy.uk] One of KPMG’s most senior executives faces scrutiny from the UK audit regulator over a series of errors in the accounts of M&C Saatchi. The Financial Reporting Council has made initial inquiries to determine whether KPMG’s auditing, which was led by Chief Risk Officer John Bennet, met required standards over a four-year period.

Revenues steady at PwC as firm weathers pandemic [Irish Times]
Revenues at professional services group PwC in Ireland were steady in 2020, as the Big Four accounting firm weathered the storm of the Covid-19 pandemic. On an all-Ireland basis, fee income for the group, which provides audit, tax and advisory services across the country, rose by just €2 million to €566 million in the year to December 31st, 2020. Employee figures rose by 2.4 per cent, or 130 to 5,418.

SEC chief plots first moves in new role [The Hill] “I think Gary Gensler’s biggest challenge right now is he’s got 15 front burner issues … and frankly I don’t think that regulators have seen anything like this since the 1930s,” said Tyler Gellasch, executive director of the Healthy Markets Association, an advocacy group that supports greater transparency in financial markets.

Investors doubt U.S. capital gains tax plan alone can derail market rally [Reuters] U.S. stocks rebounded on Friday from a day-earlier swoon as investors digested the implications of a planned capital gains tax hike, with many pointing to reasons why such a policy alone would be unlikely to threaten the rally in equities.

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3 Comments

  1. Deloitte culture is an armpit. There’s a reason why Deloitte Canada stopped taking cultural pulse surveys…if they stay ignorant a problem doesn’t exist. They discuss that culture is important to strategy blah blah blah yet senior leaders aren’t held accountable. I have friends that work in internal firm investigations at Deloitte Canada and are pretty much told to go through cases fast and find ways to dismiss. The firm should connect the dots and realize where there is high employee turnover, complaints, lack of promos there’s a problem. A senior leader self reporting good culture means nothing. How many alumni refer business back?

    Interestingly, the head of people in culture for Deloitte FA Canada is Karen Werger. Go figure….

    1. >” I have friends that work in internal firm investigations at Deloitte Canada and are pretty much told to go through cases fast and find ways to dismiss.”

      Lol, false. You refer to TR- and that is not how we operate.

  2. > In general, U.S. employers can mandate their workers get vaccinated,

    Absolutely not while a drug is in emergency approval state. It can only be mandatory if fully approved. Whomever wrote that hasn’t read 21 U.S.C. 564, Authorization for medical products for use in emergencies.

    > [Financial Review] Consultancy giant Deloitte has become the first major professional services firm in the country to voluntarily disclose the number of workplace investigations conducted each year – roughly 15 a year over the past three years

    Paywalled.

    But what does “investigation” mean… is it HR, is it ethics, is it management? Plus 15/year just at face value (I don’t have context because of paywall) doesn’t seem like a lot for the size of the Firm.

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