June 25, 2018

Accounting News Roundup: Most CEOs Sticking With Trump and Cheap Fonts | 08.15.17

accounting news trump ceos goat yoga calibri font printing

CEOs and Trump

Yesterday, I wrote about Mark Weinberger, EY’s Global CEO, and that he should resign from President Trump’s Strategic and Advisory Council. Since I wrote that post, two more CEOs — Under Armour’s Kevin Plank and Intel’s Brian Krzanich — resigned from the manufacturing council, the same one that Merck’s Ken Frazier left in the wake of the president’s timid condemnation of the white supremacists’ march in Charlottesville, Va.

But most CEOs on both of the advisory councils are staying quiet, and DealBook’s Andrew Ross Sorkin wrote about why that is:

Mr. Trump’s vitriol against Mr. Frazier and Merck — a company that depends on the government as a buyer for many of its drugs — will perhaps have an even greater chilling effect on other C.E.O.s who may consider speaking out. (The potential for economic retribution against Merck also demonstrates just how brave Mr. Frazier was in taking a stand.)

When I asked one chief executive Monday morning why he had remained publicly silent, he told me: “Just look at what he did to Ken. I’m not sticking my head up.” Which, of course, is the reason he said I could not quote him by name.

Other CEOs feel that they can have a positive impact on Trump by remaining on these councils. I expressed my doubt about this because POTUS isn’t interested in listening to other people’s ideas if they don’t benefit him. He loves having these powerful business leaders near him, but he couldn’t care less what they have to say because his whole philosophy for governing is “I’m the President and you’re not.”

Most business leaders are willing to accept that, Sorkin writes, because “they’re desperate to keep a line open to the president even if it is only one-way.”

A font only an accountant could love

Some Going Concern readers may remember a spirited discussion a few years back about which font to use for workpapers. With that in mind, this recent Journal of Accountancy column discusses a topic that will be near and dear to some of you:

A reader responding to the April 2017 Technology Q&A item “What Fonts Work Best in Excel?,” suggested that I should have recommended a skinnier font than Calibri to save ink and money. As the reader points out, Microsoft also offers a skinnier version of Calibri called Calibri Light that can save money.

The author even cites a 2010 study from the University of Wisconsin — Green Bay that found the school could save $30k “by switching from the Arial font to the Century Gothic font to meet its printing needs.” In some firms, this kind of information could be enough to get you promoted.

Previously, on Going Concern…

Weinberger, supra. We also welcomed the new Grant Thornton partners. In Open Items: “Does anyone have any advice for breaking into a manager role?

In other news:

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Accounting News Roundup | 01.21.10

How to find the “best and brightest” [CPA Success]
This may be a better topic for the friendly HR professional but figuring out who these future accounting rock stars are before they show up on their first day is “more art than science”, as Tom Hood notes.
Popular to some old-school thought, GPA does not always indicate who’s going to dominate in the real world and “soft skills” — besides being a terrible term — are in more demand than ever.
Help The The American Red Cross of Greater Chicago Help Haiti [Re: The Auditors]
The American Red Cross of Greater Chicago is having a drive today and since Francine’s friend is the CFO, we’ll be glad pass around the news:

One of my oldest and dearest friends, Guillermo Becerra, is the CFO of the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago. I asked him how I could help him, and the Red Cross, during what must be an incredibly busy time post-Haiti earthquake.

“The Chicagoland community will come together on Thursday, January 21 to give to the American Red Cross as we help the people of Haiti recover from the catastrophic earthquake that devastated their country last week.
The Chicago Helps Haiti media relief drive begins at 5 a.m. and lasts until 11 p.m. Nearly every TV and radio station in our area will be promoting this fundraising effort throughout the day. You can help too, by giving via phone or online, and sharing your thoughts here, on Facebook or Twitter, and by asking others to give.
To give from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. CALL 1 (877) 565-5000 or visit www.chicagoredcross.org/haiti

Plus, we’re guessing that if you give, your 2009 tax return isn’t much of a concern.
If Your Password Is 123456, Just Make It HackMe [NYT]
The Times is concerned that you have a shitty password which puts you at a huge risk of being hacked by someone sitting in their parents’ basement.

Imperva found that nearly 1 percent of the 32 million people it studied had used “123456” as a password. The second-most-popular password was “12345.” Others in the top 20 included “qwerty,” “abc123” and “princess.”

You know who you are, ye with stupid passwords. Also, don’t even think of changing it to “654321” because that drops in at #19.

Accounting News Roundup: Haiti Relief Passes Senate; Accounting Job Surge? CPAs Basically Control People’s Lives | 01.22.10

Senate votes for faster tax breaks for Haiti gifts [WaPo]
As expected, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed legislation yesterday that allows taxpayers to deduct donations made for Haiti relief efforts. You have until the end of February to donate so that it may be included on your 2009 return.

Maybe it’s bad legislation but we’ve been over that.

CPA Jobs Set for Surge. But When? [CPA Trendlines]
That’s the question, isn’t it? Rick Telberg, who has done a great job of tracking the Bureau of Labor Statistics on accountants, points out that while the latest BLS forecasts a 22% increase (279,400 jobs) by 2018, there’s no indication that it’s happening now:

[M]any tax, accounting and finance professionals are still slogging through the Great Recession. The Association for Financial Professionals, for instance, reported that about one in four respondents say their organizations will contract in 2010. At the same time, a PricewaterhouseCoopers survey of private companies found 43 percent of CEOs and CFOs still budgeting no expansion over the next 12 months to 18 months. The data just seem to reinforce economic uncertainties and a weak outlook.

The BLS is looking past the past the recession for the jump in opportunities but just when the hell will that be? Just because the economy isn’t contracting currently, doesn’t mean it won’t in the future and this “recovery” has been tepid at best.

Theismann to CPAs: You Are the Conscience of America [Web CPA]
Joe Theismann gets it. He knows that without all of you out there in CPA land, your clients don’t stand a chance. They’d be finished. Finished!

“You’re the conscience of America,” Theismann told conference-goers. “You are the survivors in tough times. With accountants, I’m not looking for someone to file taxes and do my financials. I can do that myself online. In your position you can basically control people’s lives.”

So get out there and control somebody’s life. Joe Theismann is expecting it.