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Friday Footnotes: Oh Not Again, KPMG; Deloitte Goes Viral With TP; PwC Is ‘Watching’ Staff | 6.12.20

KPMG Gets Reprimand From U.K. Regulator Over Reserves Audits [Bloomberg] The U.K.’s accounting watchdog reprimanded KPMG after the firm admitted shortcomings in three years of work for a client, which had to restate its distributable reserves twice. The Financial Reporting Council said the accounting firm admitted problems in its reserves audits of Foresight 4 VCT plc, and ordered KPMG to check compliance with revised audit procedures on company capital and distributions.

Businesses Must Reclaim Prudent Accounting Principles [Harvard Business Review] Prudent accounting balances the forces that drive a business to be efficient and resilient by helping a company stay asset light and forcing it to write off dud projects as their losses become apparent, even in otherwise good times. Such a company is thus less likely to throw good money after bad, lowering waste in the company and in the economy. And, when bad times hit, the company is less prone to be carrying unwanted costs, a huge relief for everyone, including the taxpayer.

FASB addresses insurance, convertible instruments, gifts-in-kind [Journal of Accountancy] FASB voted Wednesday to propose delaying the effective date of its standard on long-duration insurance contracts by one year and to approve two new standards.

Lawyer Who Ran From Ernst & Young Tax Shelter Case Gets 3 Years [Bloomberg] A lawyer who spent more than a decade on the lam avoiding U.S. charges that he worked with partners at accounting giant Ernst & Young LLP to develop and sell illegal tax shelters was sentenced to three years in federal prison. David Smith pleaded guilty in February to a single count of filing a false tax return. He was initially indicted in 2008, but he fled to Vancouver ahead of the charges.

Video of dancing Monitor Deloitte consultants ‘goes viral’ [] Someone please give these people some hours to bill. “Following a mock newscast imploring people to consume responsibly, Taylor Swift’s ‘Shake It Off’ plays, and more dancing consultants gleefully hurl plentiful rolls of toilet paper at one another.”

PwC Offers Staff AI Wristbands to Assess Stress During Pandemic [] Big Four giant PwC is offering U.K. employees AI-enabled wristbands to monitor pulse, sleep and exercise patterns to help assess stress and anxiety during the coronavirus pandemic.

Banks take hard line against accountants seeking fees for PPP referrals [American Banker] Banks argue that they are not obligated to make the payments unless they reached upfront agreements with people who were acting as the agents of small-business applicants. They contend that federal guidance does not require them to pay agent fees, but rather puts limits on the size of any fees that they choose to pay.

KPMG partner ‘dishonest’ [Financial Review] In the latest incident of Accountants Acting Badly, regulators have slammed long-time KPMG partner Chris Allenby for alleged dishonesty and obstructing a Tax Office investigation into clients in the firm’s Enterprise division.

BPM Named “Best CPA Firm for Women” in 2020 [Yahoo Finance] BPM comes out on top in a contest of 13 accounting firms.