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KPMG U.K. Chairman Taking Heat for Defending Carillion Audit

An article published today by The Times in which KPMG U.K. Chairman Bill Michael defended the firm’s audit of Carillion is getting some reaction on Twitter—good for the newspaper, bad for Michael and KPMG. The article states: The chairman of KPMG has hit back at MPs in charge of the inquiry into the collapse of […]

Accounting News Roundup: Big 4 Get Share of Blame for Carillion and Apology Letters for Embezzlement | 05.16.18

Key findings from the MPs’ report into Carillion’s collapse [The Guardian] Two parliamentary committees spread the blame around for the collapse of the British construction company, with the Big 4 getting its fair share. The report called KPMG, Carillion’s auditor, “complicit” for “complacently signing off its directors’ increasingly fantastical figures.” Deloitte, the internal auditor, “too […]

Accounting News Roundup: Theranos’s Missing Audit Report; PwC’s Carillion Fees; Tax Planning Games | 03.21.18

The investors duped by the Theranos fraud never asked for one important thing [MW] Francine McKenna reports that that thing was a set of audited financial statements. So, did they not get them because a) the “smart money” isn’t so smart or b) they don’t believe an auditor’s opinion is worth anything? PwC charges more […]

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Accounting News Roundup: Forever Tax War; GE’s Fresh Blood; KPMG’s Carillion Excuse | 02.26.18

Washington’s Fight Over Taxes Is Only Beginning [NYT] With so many provisions expiring, especially for individuals, and the GOP taking a quick and dirty approach to lawmaking, tax pros will have to stay on their toes for years. “This is anything but tax simplification,” KPMG’s vice chair of tax said. Treasury Official, Critical of Parts […]

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Accounting News Roundup: KPMG’s Audit of Carillion; New Tax Law, One Month On; Happy Tax Season | 01.29.18

KPMG to be investigated over Carillion auditing [The Guardian] The U.K.’s Financial Reporting Council probe “will cover 2014 to 2016 and additional audit work carried out during 2017,” including “whether KPMG breached any rules, in particular the ethical and technical standards for auditors.” KPMG said it would fully cooperate. The Tax Law, Just One Month […]

U.K.’s Audit Regulator Wants to Find Out Exactly Why KPMG Is Such a Hot F*cking Mess

From the Wall Street Journal: The U.K. watchdog for accounting and audit on Tuesday launched an independent review into the governance, controls and culture at KPMG LLP’s U.K. audit unit. The Financial Reporting Council will examine KPMG’s risk management, its controls and the behavior of partners and other employees in the audit practice. This first-of-its-kind […]

KPMG France Just Poached 130 Lawyers From a French Law Firm, Which Is Understandably Pissed

In Going Concern’s nine-plus-year history, Caleb and Adrienne have chronicled many, many instances of “competitive poaching” among the Big 4 firms. PwC and KPMG, in particular, have a long history of poaching from one another. But with the Big 4 firms’ legal brands showing huge growth among alternative legal service providers, what is starting to […]

According to Some List, Big 4 CEOs Are Among the Best ‘Brand Guardians’ in the World

It’s listicle time, you guys. This one comes from an outfit called Brand Finance, which calls itself “the world’s leading independent branded business valuation and strategy consultancy.” At today’s World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Brand Finance released its Global 500 report, which ranked the world’s 500 most valuable brands. The report also ranked the […]

An 8% Drop in Pay Might Be the Reason Why Some Grant Thornton U.K. Partners Were Pissy at CEO

We’re just spitballin’ here. From Economia: [Grant Thornton] said on Friday its average profit per partner fell 8% from £403,000 to £373,000 in 2017/18. Ouch! Of the top six accounting firms in the United Kingdom, this puts Grant Thornton sixth, by quite a bit, in average partner pay for the 2017-18 financial year: Deloitte: £832,000 […]

KPMG Is Thankful for SOX

I was kinda wondering about this myself, but I figured the answer would be no. From Tammy Whitehouse of Compliance Week: KPMG is under fire in the U.K. for diminishing audit performance, particularly in connection with the collapse of British construction firm Carillion. The firm has reportedly advised its partners internally that it would halt all […]

KPMG Gets One-Year Auditing Ban in Oman

2018 has been a no-good, rotten year for KPMG. The firm has been embroiled in accounting scandals in the United States and South Africa, was told by the United Kingdom’s accounting regulator that its audit quality sucks, defended an indefensible audit of the now-collapsed Carillion in the U.K., was fined £4.5 million in the U.K. […]

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KPMG U.K. Is Giving Up Non-Audit Work on FTSE 350 Clients. Will the Other Big 4 Firms Follow?

So, Sky News broke some pretty big news in the United Kingdom earlier this morning regarding the House of Klynveld: KPMG is to cease undertaking non-audit work for the FTSE-350 companies whose accounts it supervises, becoming the first of the ‘big four’ firms to make such a pledge in the aftermath of scandals surrounding the […]

Financial Reporting Council’s Skipper Is Jumping Ship

Stephen Haddrill, beleaguered chief executive of the Financial Reporting Council, the audit regulator in the United Kingdom, is reportedly to debark by the end of the year. No surprise. Haddrill has been a marked man since early this year, his agency targeted in Parliament as “toothless,” “useless,” and “ineffective” amid an outbreak of outrage over the collapse of the […]

Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One Before: FRC Reprimands KPMG U.K. for Crappy Audit

When it comes to the Financial Reporting Council and KPMG audits, it must be like shooting fish in a barrel. This time, the U.K. accounting watchdog fined KPMG £2.1 million ($2.7 million) on Aug. 20 following the Big 4 firm’s admission of misconduct on the audit of fashion company Ted Baker Plc’s financial statements in […]

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KPMG U.K. Lawyers Up Because Not Breaking the Law is Hard, You Guys

The Financial Times did not hold back in its headline announcing the news on KPMG U.K.’s latest hire earlier this week: KPMG appoints risk management chief after accounting scandals. Ouch. Here, KPMG, you might need this. So just who is this brave individual willing to take on a brand-new role at a scandal-plagued accounting firm? […]

Does the ‘P’ in KPMG Stand For ‘Probes?’

Because we have two new probes into KPMG to tell you about. First, two weeks after the quality of its audit work was called “unacceptable” by the Financial Reporting Council, KPMG is being probed by the United Kingdom’s accounting watchdog over its audit of British beverage wholesaler Conviviality’s financial statements, according to the Financial Times. […]

U.K. Accounting Regulator Chides KPMG For ‘Unacceptable’ Decline in Audit Quality

And here I thought Phil Mickelson’s meltdown on the 13th green at the U.S. Open on June 16 would be the worst thing to happen to KPMG this week. From Bloomberg: KPMG’s audit work in the U.K. is of an unacceptable standard, Britain’s accounting regulator said, fueling calls to reform the industry, including dismantling the […]

Accounting News Roundup: The Big 4 Oligopoly; HoweyCoins; Phone Bans | 05.17.18

KPMG chair calls Big Four an ‘oligopoly’ after Carillion collapse [FN] As usual, the Brits are little more forthright about their failings than their American counterparts. Where KPMG US CEO Lynne Douthie wrote vaguely about the alleged conspiracy of former partners, but beamed about how awesome the firm is, Bill Micheal, the UK chairman, admitted […]

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Accounting News Roundup: The Big 4 Break Up Debate and H&R Block’s Shred Party | 03.22.18

Should the Big Four accountancy firms be split up? [FT] Natasha Landell-Mills argues for, and Jim Peterson against, the forced spinning off of the Big 4 audit practices. Both make compelling points. Here’s Landell-Mills: “Lasting reform depends on auditors working for shareholders, not management. […] Lack of scrutiny creates space for conflicts of interest.” And […]

Off-Balance Sheet Liabilities: Still Got It!

If you were worried that the heyday of companies using accounting rules to stash gazillions of dollars in debt out of sight was over, you can rest easy, friend. The Wall Street Journal reports on a Moody’s analysis by Trevor Pijper that found that defunct U.K. contractor Carillion used loose rules to keep about half a […]

Accounting News Roundup: Lecturing Auditors; Accounting for Celebrity Taste; C Corp Fever | 02.23.18

MPs turn fire on KPMG and Deloitte partners over Carillion [FT] There was an auditor flogging in the U.K. with the usual theatrics: “I would not hire you to do an audit of the contents of my fridge, because when I read it, I would not know what was actually in my fridge or not,” […]

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Accounting News Roundup: Whistleblowers; Big 4 Impunity; A Big Accounts Receivable Error | 02.22.18

Supreme Court Curbs Protections for Whistleblowers [WSJ] If you or someone you know is thinking about blowing the whistle on some shady behavior, forget about reporting it internally; take your tip to the Securities and Exchange Commission if you want anti-retaliation protection under Dodd-Frank. Naturally, this came out of a case of accounting shenanigans: The […]

Accounting News Roundup: Poaching a Tax Partner and a Big 4 Feast | 02.13.18

King & Spalding Adds New York Tax Partner from KPMG [TAL] Kevin Glenn, a 22-year vet of the House of Klynveld, is now complete: “Glenn said it was a ‘lifetime-long aspiration’ to become a law firm partner.” FWIW, he doesn’t expect the Big 4 to “make significant inroads” in the U.S. legal market. That sounds […]

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Accounting News Roundup: Too Much Tax Cuts; ‘Baller’ Stock Offerings; Pot Banking | 02.06.18

Investors Fear the Tax Cuts Will Work Too Well [NYT] Andrew Ross Sorkin writes that “Investors believe his policies to stoke growth are going to work so well that they will overheat the economy, and force the Federal Reserve to try to slow things down by raising interest rates faster than expected.” IPO Shortcuts Put […]

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Accounting News Roundup: Competition for Big 4 Might Be Nice; Big Postcards; RSM, EY Go Shopping | 01.31.18

Calls for more scrutiny of top accounting firms after Carillion collapse [The Guardian] Stephen Haddrill, the head of the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) in the U.K., told some MPs that “there should be more competition in the major accounting and audit area” and also that he’d be asking the country’s competition regulator to take another […]

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Accounting News Roundup: Who Else at KPMG Knew About Stolen Info?; The Revolving Door; Pot and IFRS | 01.24.18

KPMG indictment suggests many who weren’t charged knew regulator data was stolen [MarketWatch] Francine McKenna’s dive into the indictment surfaced with a disturbing possibility: “at least five more unnamed KPMG partners and one outside consultant either knew or chose to ignore the illegal source of the information.” Some Accountants Got Caught in the Revolving Door […]