• Accounting News Roundup: PCAOB Transparency and a Deloitte Cafeteria Accepts Bitcoin | 03.22.17

    By | March 22, 2017

    PCAOB transparency

    One of the biggest gripes about the PCAOB is that their disciplinary proceedings are conducted in secret until the matter is finalized. Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Jack Reed (D-R.I.) have introduced bills in the past that would make these hearings public, but they went nowhere. They reintroduced the bill just last week to give it another go. Here’s part of Reed’s statement:

    Currently, Congress, investors, and others are being denied critical information about an auditor’s disciplinary process. Investors and companies alike should be aware when the auditors and accountants they rely on have been charged or sanctioned for violating professional auditing standards.

    The article above notes that the SEC, DOL, FDIC, CFTC and FINRA all have open disciplinary proceedings.  There isn’t a good reason to have PCAOB proceedings in held in secret. It’s purely a wrinkle that was jammed into Sarbanes-Oxley for the accounting firms. It’ll probably take some clever legislative maneuvering to get it rectified.

    Elsewhere in PCAOB stuff: PCAOB inspection findings rise at Grant Thornton

    Bitcoin

    Here’s an actual press release from Deloitte Canada boasting about their employees are using the bitcoin ATM the firm installed last fall.

    Since the installation of the BTM in the fall of 2016, Deloitte’s Toronto office has seen tremendous adoption and understanding of the cryptocurrency, and its underlying technology blockchain.

    “After placing a BTM in our offices and seeing Deloitte personnel downloading a wallet and buying their first fraction of a bitcoin, it seemed natural to enable the next step of the use case under our own roof,” said Ian Chan, Partner, Deloitte.

    Yes, “Deloitte Canada has announced that it is now accepting bitcoin at Bistro 1858, the Toronto office’s internal restaurant.”

    This sounds just like a carnival. You take regular money to obtain this mysterious other currency that you have to spend on delicious, overpriced food. I really hope the next thing at Deloitte Toronto that accepts bitcoin is a Skee-Ball machine. I would seriously consider getting some bitcoin for that.

    Accountants behaving badly

    Luke Fairfield of San Diego was hanging out with the wrong crowd:

    Luke Fairfield admitted the operation used at least 26 bank accounts to launder more than $8.3 million in gambling proceeds from January 2011 to October 2015, and that he helped set up shell companies and instructed others how to avoid reporting requirements to throw off law enforcement, according to the plea agreement.

    Fairfield also admitted to helping the operation’s leader, Owen Hanson, hide his illegal income by filing false income tax returns.

    Or maybe Fairfield was the wrong crowd. Sometimes it’s hard to tell when people have gone fully dark side.

    Previously, on Going Concern…

    Rachel Andujar wrote about saying no. I wrote about a Deloitte employee who’s suing a bar for kicking him out over his ugly hat. In Open Items, someone asked about deferring a Big 4 start date.

    In other news:

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