September 24, 2018

Accounting News Roundup: PwC Capped Off 2017 With More Bad News | 01.02.18

pwc colonial award

Judge Says PricewaterhouseCoopers Was Negligent In Colonial Bank Failure [WSJ]
Late on Sunday, news broke that a judge in Alabama found PwC negligent in a lawsuit brought by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. for violating auditing rules and failing to “take steps that could have detected a $2 billion fraud” that contributed to Colonial Bank’s failure. Judge Barbara Jacobs Rothstein did dismiss other charges against the firm brought by the FDIC and Colonial’s bankruptcy trustee. Judge Rothstein will “now consider separately whether damages should be imposed on PwC, and how much.”

PwC ‘fell short’ on averting one of the biggest US bank collapses [FT]
The finding in the Colonial case didn’t match the magnitude of two other of PwC’s big settlements last year — MF Global and Taylor, Bean & Whitaker. Jim Peterson told the FT that whatever the judge rules, the finding will be”within PwC’s tolerance on a worst-case basis.”

Steinhoff Gains as Retailer Plans to Restate 2015 Results [Bloomberg]
The owner of Sleepy’s and Mattress Firm in the U.S., Poundland in the U.K., and a slew of other brands across the globe, will restate 2017 and 2016 results, and its Steinhoff International Holdings Pty Ltd. unit, listed in Frankfurt, will also restate 2015.

PCAOB delivers improved report card on Grant Thornton [ComplianceWeek, sub. req’d]
The 2016 report for Grant Thornton found deficiencies in 8 of the 34 audits examined or 24 percent. This improved on last year’s inspection that found deficiencies in 14 of 34 audits, for a rate of 41 percent.

BP Sees $1.5 Billion Charge for Last Quarter on U.S. Tax Law [Bloomberg]
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, as expected, will force a lot of deferred tax adjustments.

Previously, on Going Concern…

ICYMI, President Trump went totally out of character, boasting that he knows taxes better than any CPA.

In Open Items, someone is looking for tips to passing the CPA exam in one go.

In other news:

Get the Accounting News Roundup in your inbox every weekday by signing up here.

See something we missed? Have a tip, correction, comment, or complaint? Email us at [email protected].

Related articles

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.