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November 29, 2022

Monday Morning Accounting News Brief: Audit Fees Are Up; Salary Expectations Are Too High; Sus SEC Shizz | 11.7.22

sleepy dog with an alarm clock in bed

Several of America’s largest accounting firms have explored the possibility of taking private equity cash in recent months, as money from buyout funds adds fuel to a mergers and acquisitions boom across the industry, reports FT. CFO.com wrote about the accountant shortage and suggested four ways to address it, not one of them was “pay people more” but it did say that expectations must be tempered: “Twenty-two percent of candidates in our survey have too high a salary expectation,” said said Brandi Britton, executive director for finance and accounting at talent solutions Robert Half International. “They come out of universities expecting $100,000 since they have a couple of friends getting that in other professions. Some level-setting is needed.” An employee of Deloitte’s India office has been found to be the mastermind of a computer hacking gang that targeted British businesses, government officials and journalists. In Kuwait, KPMG is teaching kids about internet safety and how to avoid cyberbullying (how to avoid cyberbullying: turn your device off). Average audit fees rose a slight 2.5% from $2,600,677 in 2020 to $2,666,659 in 2021, reflecting increased demands on auditors during the pandemic, according to a study released Monday. The professor who wrote Accounting for Slavery: Masters and Management spoke at Kellogg School of Management last week; the book’s topic is exactly what you think it is. An article about ESG as the next big accounting trend. Internal auditors’ representatives in Washington are launching a political action committee in hopes of expanding the influence of the industry — some of whose products are poised to be at the center of contentious policy battles in Congress beginning next year.

A bit late on this but SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce used the words sus and yeet in a speech about standard setting and regulation:

The Supreme Court’s dictionary debates in Yates make me think about how the task facing legislators is somewhat akin to that facing people charged with keeping dictionaries up-to-date. Whether you are responsible for writing laws or dictionaries, you try to be responsive to current events while maintaining a longer-term view. How do you figure out which words are just fads and which merit inclusion in the official dictionary, where they will stay for decades or centuries to come? What will our grandchildren think twenty years from now when they are perusing a dictionary’s digital pages and come across words we added this year? Metaverse, booster dose, side hustle, altcoin, pumpkin spice, use case, and greenwash made the list. Those words and phrases likely have staying power. But sus, yeet, and adorkable—all new slang words in this year’s Merriam-Webster’s dictionary—will we still be using those in twenty years? If so, the English language will be janky and in need of MacGyver[ing]—two other words on this year’s list. Consider that in 2002, brain-box, mizzle-shinned, and celly made it into the dictionary. I may be the first person to have spoken those words in 2022. Revisiting dictionary entries after the cultural moment they reflect has passed probably makes sense.

If you can make more slinging ice cream than you can for a Big 4 firm it’s time to get out:

It’s almost here!! People who took the CPA exam on October 1 should be getting their scores any minute now. Or this evening, anyway. They’ll probably still be angry about it, justifiably so. NASBA is tweeting stupid platitudes this morning instead of score releases, Reddit is predictably upset.

A few things we’re working on this week:

  • We’re going to jump off the FT article about accounting firms and private equity linked above with a rumor
  • We’re still digging into some kind of situation at BDO USA, it’s a big situation OK.
  • An underused CPA exam prep tool you may want to try out
  • I’m cleaning up the archive — do me a favor and let me know if you come across any broken links please

 

Some old white guys talking about diversity:

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