News

Layoff Watch ’19: Walmart Accountants and Finance Workers In Charlotte, NC

The Charlotte Business Journal reported last week on some doom-and-gloom news for Walmart accountants based in the Queen City: Retail giant Walmart Inc. will lay off hundreds in Charlotte starting later this year as it outsources its finance and accounting operations. The retailer filed a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification with the N.C. Department of Commerce this […]

AICPA Has Finally Snagged the .CPA Domain Out From Under Untrustworthy Car Park Attendants

In a deal years in the making, the AICPA announced this week it has finally convinced ICANN to let them manage the coveted .cpa domain. Just in time, too, lest it get snapped up by the Canadian Psychiatric Association or Cut and Paste Artists. Back in 2015, AICPA President, CEO, and Mercy main Barry Melancon […]

Accountants Behaving Badly: Lots of Theft, Ponzi Scheme, Tax Evasion

Here’s a roundup of some bad stuff accountants did or were accused of doing over the past week or so. Auto shop accountant charged with stealing over $175K from employer [Chicago Sun-Times] Rungnapa Correia is accused of stealing more than $175,000 from a Bensenville, IL, auto repair shop she used to work at as an […]

Accountants Behaving Badly: Fun with Fridge Magnets, College Admissions Scam, That’s No Man, Baby

Here’s a roundup of some of the very bad things accountants have done over the past week or two. Nxivm accountant spelled out dirty messages with colorful fridge magnets [New York Post] The racketeering and sex trafficking trial of creepy old guy Keith Raniere, the leader of the sex cult Nxivm, is currently going on […]

Crowe Accountant Jacob Sandy Died of Apparent Drowning During Kayaking Trip

Sad news to report out of Indiana, as the body of 23-year-old accountant Jacob Sandy, who was last seen kayaking on May 18, was found along the Lake Michigan shoreline on May 29. The official cause of death is pending but is believed to be accidental drowning, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources said in […]

TIL: There’s an Accounting Hall of Fame and It’s Got Some Familiar Names Along with Some Unfamiliar Ones

Browsing Reddit the other day for interesting accounting topics as one does when one has written nearly 3,000 posts over a span of 10 years on the subject, I came across this. I have to say, it’s not every day I find some dusty old corner of the industry that’s new even to me but […]

Accountants Behaving Badly: Beating Up Ex-Wife, Tax Crimes, Stealing Lots of Money

Spend some time this Memorial Day remembering those who died serving our country and reading about how awful some people in your profession really are. Asian accountant smashed ex-wife’s head against a car outside David Lloyd centre and called her a ‘bacon basher’ after she began dating a white man who worked at their lettings […]

Layoff Watch ’19: Accountants Said to Be Among Casualties In Ford Bloodbath

There was some big news coming out of Dearborn, MI, yesterday, as Ford Motor Co. said by August it will have given 7,000 white-collar workers pink slips worldwide, a 10% reduction in its global salaried workforce, as part of a restructuring plan to reduce bureaucracy and increase revenue. And accountants are reportedly among those losing […]

Accountants Behaving Badly: Busted with Meth, Stealing From Clients, Bank Fraud

A look at the best of the worst accountant malfeasance around the globe over the past week or so. British accountant, 47, faces the death penalty in the Philippines ‘after being caught with meth in a drugs raid’ [Daily Mail] Philip Joseph was in a flat with two locals when police burst through the door […]

Layoff Watch ’19: United Airlines Is Axing 100 Accounting Jobs in Houston

Not-so-good news today from the Associated Press: United Airlines says it will cut about 100 accounting jobs in Houston in July and shift the work to a contractor. The airline reported the layoffs in a letter this week to the Texas Workforce Commission. It did not identify the contractor that will handle accounting of revenue […]

Accountants Behaving Badly: Murder, Webcam Models, Defrauding Celebrities

It was a bad week for accountants from the U.K. with the first name of Andrew. AFC Fylde accountant blew £240,000 on sex, drink and drugs [BBC News] A semi-professional socc … I mean, football team in England nearly went belly-up because its finance director, Andrew Barnbrook, stole thousands of pounds from the team to […]

Bad MLB Pitcher-Turned-Bad Accountant Fesses Up to Stealing $145,000 From Employer

The Minnesota Star Tribune has an update on Ben Hendrickson, the former Milwaukee Brewers pitcher whose post-baseball accounting career took a dubious turn while employed by Floors Northwest in Fridley, MN. A Twin Cities man who briefly pitched in the Twins organization and had two short stints as a Major Leaguer has pleaded guilty after […]

Winners v. Losers This Week: Dick Pics, Grant Thornton’s Heyday, Auditors F*cked As Always

Back in the day we used to end the week with a “Quote of the Week,” but that shit gets boring fast, so instead I got the bright idea to do a Winners vs Losers recap. You should be able to figure out how this works as it isn’t rocket science but just in case: […]

Accountants Behaving Badly: Strangling Wife, Stealing Money From a Band, Shopping Spree on Company’s Dime

A look at the best of the worst accountant malfeasance around the globe over the past month or so. CA throttles wife to death, tries to pass it off as suicide, arrested [Times of India] Here is a disturbing story out of India: Jaiveer Singh, a 52-year-old chartered accountant, was arrested on May 1 for allegedly […]

CEO boy

Someone Break It to ‘UK’s Youngest Accountant’ That Accounting Is a Sh*tty Way to Become a Millionaire

Guys, allow me to introduce you to the UK’s “youngest accountant.” He’s making the rounds in the rags across the pond, so we figured we’d give him his 15 minutes of fame here in the good ole U.S. of A as well because we’re just generous like that. Ranveer Singh Sandhu is a 15-year-old “entrepreneur” […]

Accounting Class Actions Are Once Again a Billion-Dollar Business

Well, looky here. The total value of accounting securities class-action settlements in 2018 reached the second highest total in the past decade, according to a new analysis by Cornerstone Research. The report found that while the number of accounting case settlements declined to 41 in 2018 from 49 in the previous year, total settlement value […]

Dorky Accountant Robbed His Employer to Buy Hookers and Blow Because Some Dude at the Office Made Fun of Him

Y’all ready to meet a real bad ass? You sure? I’m not sure you can take this. Darren Carvill, 38, is headed to jail after a “weekend of madness” which included hookers and blow funded by approximately £170,000 ($220,000 USD) he stole from his employer, a car servicing company. The Sun reports: A source revealed: […]

Excited children

Hey Y’all, Let’s Get Salty About These 2018 Elijah Watt Sells Award Winners

Whelp it’s that time of year again, the time when we recognize the efforts of an elite handful of CPA exam candidates whose performance on one of the toughest professional examinations out there ranks the best of the best. The AICPA handed out 110 Elijah Watt Sells Awards for 2018 last week, and as is […]

auditor fraud pwc colonial fdic

Accounting Fraud Watch: Jumio Founder, Former College Controller, Ex-Roadrunner Execs

We arrived late to a couple accounting fraud settlement parties thrown by the SEC recently. All the Lagunitas and buffalo chicken dip were gone, and we were stuck drinking Busch Light and munching on carrot sticks. But we’ll still recap what happened at these shindigs anyway. Silicon Valley startup Jumio’s ex-CEO settles SEC fraud charges […]

Judgement

Accountants of Reddit Take Instagrammer to Karma Court Over Meme Theft

Inb4 one of y’all thinks to comment “geez, Adrienne, slow news day?” let me remind you that we write about accounting; every day is a slow news day. So unless one of y’all plan to embezzle something, let it go, that comment doesn’t hurt me. In the last year or so, /r/accounting has made the […]

Wisconsin CPA Who Fatally Struck Illinois State Trooper with His Car Pleads Not Guilty to Reckless Homicide

Scott Larsen appeared in a Skokie, Ill. courtroom on March 11, where the Wisconsin accountant pleaded not guilty to felony reckless homicide charges in the January death of Illinois State Trooper Christopher Lambert. According to a Chicago Tribune report, Larsen, 61, also pleaded not guilty to violating Scott’s Law, which increases potential penalties for motorists […]

Zaza Pachulia’s Ex-Accountant Is Going to Jail But Not Until After April 30 Because Busy Season

You know it’s tax season when an accountant who was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison for identity theft is just too busy to go to jail right now. Such is the case for Randy Usow of Mequon, Wis., who agreed to plead guilty to one count of theft of government property and one […]

Brother of Beloved Chicago Meteorologist Tom Skilling Is No Longer In Federal Custody

To me, WGN-TV in Chicago is synonymous with three things: the Chicago Cubs (sadly, only for one more year), Bozo the Clown, and Tom Skilling. For more than three decades, Skilling has been chief meteorologist at WGN, and he celebrated his 40th year with the station last August. While other meteorologists in Chicago get three- […]

Indiana Tax Preparer Fires Lesbian Client Because Eww Lesbians or Something

An Indiana tax preparer is in the national news this week after refusing service to a long-time client once she discovered the client was — gasp! — a lesbian. Bailey Brazzel has been using Nancy Fivecoate of Carter Tax Service in Russiaville, Indiana for five years but got a nasty surprise when she tried to […]

Wisconsin Accountant Charged with Reckless Homicide in the Death of Illinois State Trooper

If you live in the Chicago area like I do, you’ve by now heard or read about the death of Illinois State Trooper Christopher Lambert, who was struck by a vehicle on an Illinois tollway on Jan. 12 after he got out of his patrol car to assist drivers involved in an accident. Well, we […]

James Arthur

Crappy Gambler Who Also Happened to Be an Accountant Jailed for Stealing From X Factor Winner

Not to show my ignint ‘Murican here but I have to admit I don’t know dick about X Factor. I think those one dudes were on there, you know, the ones who looked like skinny, middle-aged lesbians led by a bootleg Mick Jagger. To be fair, I can’t name an American Idol contestant since the […]

Carmine Di Sibio

Hey, So We Were Totally Right About That Carmine Di Sibio Thing

Back when Mark Weinberger announced his pending retirement from EY late last year, the tipster who provided us that information included another tidbit: that Carmine Di Sibio would take his place. Of course, spokespeeps at EY would not confirm that part, but we felt comfortable enough with their nervousness over us having that info that we […]

you almost did the thing

Welcome to the First-Ever (and Maybe Last-Ever) Going Concern Awards

Since this website is aimed at the coveted 18-34 age demographic (don’t worry if you’re not in it, I got booted from that box a few years ago myself, pass the back pain pills please), y’all should be more than familiar with getting trophies for doing absolutely nothing if the 60-year-olds who gave them to […]

Tinfoil hat guy with tinfoil cat

The AICPA Has Gone Full Doobie-Smoking, Conspiracy Theorist Wackjob

As some of you may know, I love a good conspiracy. I love getting lost in bizarre corners of YouTube populated with bad Movie Maker “documentaries” about government experiments gone awry, celebrity cloning programs, and CIA mind control. I draw the line at lizard people; lizard people are just stupid. Obviously I realize most of these are […]

Former PCAOB Chief Auditor Martin Baumann Backs Out of IAASB Gig

Last month, we reported that Martin Baumann, the former chief auditor and director of professional standards at the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, was going to be the next chair of the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board. But due to “unforeseen personal circumstances,” he’s decided not to take the job. In a statement, Baumann […]

Retired Accountant Among Those Slain in Pittsburgh Synagogue Massacre

Melvin Wax, an 88-year-old retired accountant, was one of 11 people killed when a gunman who often posted anti-Semitic slurs online opened fire during worship services at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh’s Squirrel Hill neighborhood on Oct. 27. Six other people, including four police officers, were wounded in the attack. Robert Bowers, 46, […]

Barbed Wire Jail

IRS Scammer Ordered to Pay $9 Million in Restitution For Being Scummiest of the Scamming Scumbags

Given that this is a website written for accounting professionals and not, say, confused grandmas who think Steam cards are a valid form of payment for debts to the U.S. government, we rarely cover the topic of IRS phone scams. We assume, perhaps naively, that y’all are smarter than that and don’t need reminding. The […]

Scott Vetere

(UPDATE) Married Ex-KPMG Recruiter and Gym Coach Busted For Banging Young Gymnast in a Car

Whew, you guys, this one is … awkward. Scott Vetere is a 39-year-old father of three from Michigan who serves as assistant coach for the University of Michigan women’s gymnastics team, or at least he did until he resigned Oct. 15. His resignation came after Vetere was caught getting it on with an 18-year-old female […]

Ex-MLB Pitcher’s Career as an Accountant Not Going Really Well

A Minnesota man who twice had a cup of coffee in the big leagues as a pitcher with the Milwaukee Brewers was charged last week for allegedly cheating a flooring company out of about $250,000 while working there as an accountant. Ben Hendrickson, 37, of Excelsior, Minn., was charged in Anoka County District Court last […]

WTF? CPA Accused of Stealing Over $93,000 from Girl Scouts, Cancer Center

Through the years, Going Concern has chronicled accountants and finance chiefs getting caught doing really shitty things. But if this accountant is found guilty of the charges levied against her, this has to rank among the shittiest of the shitty. From the Los Angeles Daily News: A certified public accountant charged with embezzling more than […]

hottest accounting jobs

BUSTED: Which NYC Firm’s Former Partner Is Accused of Ripping Off $2 Million From Investors?

A CPA and former partner-in-charge of advisory services at New York City-based Marks Paneth LLP was arrested by federal authorities in Florida on Oct. 8 for allegedly bilking investors out of $2 million through an intellectual property scheme. Steven Henning, Ph.D., 57, was charged with one count of wire fraud in a federal court in […]

#WednesdayWisdom: Money Laundering Is Not a Specialization CPAs Should Pursue

Laundering your blue Oxford dress shirts, blouses, gray trousers, and fleece vests, good. Laundering money, bad. From the Times of San Diego: A San Diego-based certified public accountant was sentenced Tuesday to 21 months in federal prison for his role in an international drug trafficking, gambling and money laundering organization led by former University of […]

UPDATED: PwC Associate Shot and Killed By Off-Duty Dallas Cop Who Walked Into Wrong Apartment

Updated on Sept. 24, 2018: The Dallas police officer who was charged with manslaughter three days after fatally shooting PwC associate Botham Jean in his apartment on Sept. 6 was fired on Monday by Police Chief U. Renee Hall, according to the Dallas Morning News. Amber Guyger has been on administrative leave since the shooting […]

retro computer

The AICPA’s Twitter Totally Got Hacked by Bitcoin Scammers

So, I’m the first to admit I don’t know shit about blockchain, nor do I care. But I do know that public accounting firms are anxious to appear far more tech savvy than lil’ ol’ me and have been wasting a lot of time and effort talking about the transformative powers of blockchain. We’ll include […]

Martin Baumann Found a Job at Another Auditing Standard-Setter With a Five-Letter Acronym

Nearly four months after he left his position of chief auditor and director of professional standards at the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), Martin Baumann has a new gig: chair of the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB). Baumann, who was appointed to a three-year term that begins on Jan. 1, 2019, replaces […]

Lehman Brothers sign removal

Get Yer Pointin’ Fingers Ready, We’re Looking Back on the Financial Crisis Ten Years Later

I got a notification from Twitter the other day reminding me that it’s been 10 whole years since I joined. Wow, that long? I realized that I’d done it the week the economy started swirling down the drain in earnest back in 2008. Unlike my Twitter anniversary, we can argue all day over the actual […]

Ex-NBA Star Kevin Garnett Believes His Former Accountant Helped Wealth Manager Screw Him Out of $77 Million

During his illustrious 21-year NBA career, Kevin Garnett was a 15-time all-star, named the league’s MVP in 2004, and won a championship with the Boston Celtics in 2008. He also is the Minnesota Timberwolves’ all-time leader in steals. But Garnett doesn’t take too kindly to having $77 million stolen from him. That’s what he is […]

Monopoly beauty contest card

She Didn’t Win Miss America, But Miss Missouri’s Appearance Was a Win for Accountants Everywhere

HEY did y’all know an accounting major appeared on Miss America 2.0 last night? Yeah, I wouldn’t have known either were it not for an astute GC reader excitedly tweeting us the news. Miss Missouri is an accounting major. She automatically has my vote. @going_concern #MissAmerica2019 — Pat Sheridan (@accountingninja) September 10, 2018 Waves HI, […]

Elon Musk smoking a blunt

Tesla’s Chief Accounting Officer Nopes on Up Outta There After Just a Month on the Job

Tesla is having a tough time hanging onto a chief accounting officer, you guys. Dave Morton joined the company in early August after a stint as CFO of Seagate Technology. The day after Morton joined Tesla, CEO Elon Musk tweeted that he was thinking about taking the company private and buying out investors at $420 […]

NBA Player Zaza Pachulia’s Former Accountant Pleads Guilty to Identity Theft, Probably Never Will Have Basketball Clients Again

In dubious accountant news, Randy Usow of Mequon, Wis., has agreed to plead guilty to one count of theft of government property and one count of identity theft after stealing more than $800,000 by submitting fraudulent tax returns in the name of NBA player Zaza Pachulia and his wife, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. Pachulia, […]

Michael Cohen Pleads Guilty to Five Counts of Tax Evasion; Jury Finds Paul Manafort Guilty of Tax Fraud

We here at Going Concern have always (well, except from May 17, 2018 to July 24, 2018) given you an outlet to comment on the big news of the day. Well, two pretty big news stories broke at the same time earlier this afternoon that do not bode well for our commander-in-chief. First, in a […]

If It Wasn’t for an Accountant, Henry Golding Never Would Have Gotten ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ Gig

So my wife keeps talking about how she wants to go see “Crazy Rich Asians.” Not interested. Rom-coms aren’t my thing, although I did enjoy “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” to which “Crazy Rich Asians” is being compared. The movie’s leading man, Henry Golding, a former travel host for the BBC, had never acted on […]

A woman punching a man in an argument

CPAs Currently Engaged in a Heated Beef With the AICPA Over the ABV Credential

Good morning and happy Monday, capital market servants. Boy do we have a fun one for you today. It seems a group of CPAs/valuators has taken issue with the AICPA’s plan to allow non-CPAs to earn an Accredited in Business Valuation credential, accusing the AICPA of diluting the value of the ABV brand and doing […]

Exxon Mobil May Have Escaped an SEC Penalty Over Climate-Change Accounting But Not a Class-Action Lawsuit

Earlier this month, we reported that the Securities and Exchange Commission ended its two-year accounting probe into how Exxon Mobil Corp. calculates the value of its assets and whether the oil and gas company failed to alert investors about potential climate-change risks. The SEC decided to take no enforcement action against Exxon Mobil, but investors […]

Cath of Portlandia

We Need to Talk About This Fleece Vest Situation, You Guys

We’re a little late to the party here but a recent WSJ article addressed a critical issue impacting servants of capital markets: fleece vests. Jacob Gallagher writes: The fleece zip-up vest, the capstone of a new corporate uniform, lurks in air-conditioned corporate cubicles across America. It covers the sweating backs of nervous interns ordering supersize […]

Another Former KPMG Employee Gets Into Trouble for Insider Trading

You can add Daniel Senn to the list of current and not-so-current KPMG employees and representatives, such as Scott London, Andrei Postrado, Thomas Avent, and Phil Mickelson (but not his KPMG hat), who have either been accused of, or found guilty of, insider trading. Senn, a Klynveldian auditor from 2007 to 2013, was convicted of […]

Ex-Manafort Accountant Given the Pink Slip After Testifying

We can’t say we’re shocked by this turn of events. From Bloomberg: Paul Manafort’s former accountant was fired from a Virginia firm after she told the court she was aware that Manafort’s tax returns contained false information. Cindy Laporta testified Friday [Aug. 3] in the government’s case against the former Trump campaign chairman, saying she […]

Max Livingstone-Learmonth dressed as bishop at I Move London

Non-Religious Future PwC Partner Credits ‘Divine Intervention’ For Nabbing Purse-Snatcher

The Evening Standard reports that a soon-to-be PwC partner got to play the hero in the midst of a potentially record-breaking relay race in London, all while dressed like a bishop. Forty-year-old Max Livingstone-Learmonth was on his 10km (about 6.2 miles) leg of the I Move London race when he spotted a woman chasing a […]

accountant-marijuana

Florida Accountant Picks Up a Green Thumb in Retirement; Authorities Not Impressed

For those of you hoping to retire one day, do you know how you’ll stay busy once you’re not working? Golf? Traveling? Yes, those sound nice and leisurely. Gardening is another nice hobby, however, be sure you stay current on the marijuana laws in your area, should you decide that’s the kind of greenhouse you […]

tax-reform-cpa-skeptical-cat-crop

Accounting Firm Partners Everywhere Managing Expectations at Home

CPAs’ cats everywhere are all like… It’s been a wild week in the tax world, even if it’s mostly been bluster. Talk of tax cuts has corporate executives, rich people, and sitting U.S. Presidents all hot and bothered. But it probably has a lot of accounting firm partners fantasizing too, not only because they’re dreaming […]

donald trump tax reform

Donald Trump’s Quest to Put H&R Block Out of Business Looking Like a Total Failure

During the presidential campaign, bellowing fast food connoisseur Donald J. Trump said that his tax policy was to “Put H&R Block out of business.” So, how’s that going? Well, last month he said, “We’re going to simplify very greatly the tax code. It’s too complicated. H&R Block probably won’t be too happy,” adding, “Other than […]

H&R Block Will See AICPA’s Sternly-Worded Letters and Raise You a Kitten

In case you missed it because no one really cares, the eggheads over at the AICPA have been engaged in a feud with the pot-stirrers over at H&R Block, presumably because the AICPA thinks more average Joes should engage the services of a large accounting firm to process their 1040s rather than some guy named […]

Gen Z Attention Spans Officially on AICPA’s Radar

I don’t know what AICPA President, CEO and Electoral College Dropout Barry Melancon was getting at here, but it’s safe to say that he wasn’t plugging this as a virtue of the next crop of talent. Melancon: Attention span of the average member of Gen Z is 8 seconds. #roundtable17 — Daniel Hood (@AccountingEdit) February […]

CPA Charged With Threatening Former President Obama’s Life on Facebook

Here's a weird one: A New Jersey man has been charged with threatening now-former President Obama's life on Facebook. A report in the Philadelphia Inquirer has the details: Federal prosecutors say William Peterman Jr., 33, of Medford Lakes and Beaufort, S.C., posted two death threats on his Facebook page last week, including one addressed to […]

Accountants Who Enjoy the Relative Peace of Economy Class Aren’t Gonna Like This

Yesterday the Department of Transportation proposed rules that would permit voice calling on airplanes (over Wi-Fi, of course).The clock is ticking until we may have to say sayonara to tranquil flights and hello to the inescapable cacophony. While the DOT hasn’t approved anything yet, and policies allowing voice calling may be still several years out, […]

Supersonic Travel, Part Deux

Traveling this holiday season? Here’s a little food for thought: What if you could get to your destination 2.6x faster? Say, LA to NY in just under 2 hours? Yes, please?! A new, more economical supersonic jet is on the horizon, cutting travel time without breaking the bank. For example, London to NY in 3 […]

Koalas Need to Show Up at Accounting Firms More Often

Okay, look, yes koalas are wild animals and only live in Australia, but I've got believe that if more of these showed up at accounting firms to wander around and look cute, we'd all be much happier with the current state of things: Yes, this just happened in Leongatha. I'm sure his taxes are entirely […]

Grant Thornton Offers Unnecessary Reminder

#ElectionDay fact: Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are two of the most unpopular candidates in history>> https://t.co/bjeXFC2rpV — Grant Thornton (@GrantThorntonUS) November 8, 2016 Thanks, GT.

Billionaire Building a ’10-K for the Government’ to Win an Argument With His Wife

What do you do if you’re a retired billionaire with nothing better to do than watch the basketball team you own? If you’re former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, you assemble a team of “25 data geeks” to “[pore] over more than three decades of government documents to create a comprehensive accounting of U.S. spending.” The […]

Crunching Some Numbers on the Cubs

Everyone’s buzzing about the Cubs this week. 108 years is a long time to wait for a championship win! In honor, let’s take a peek at some numbers that are floating around. That’s always fun. Ticket price mania World Series ticket prices soared to an average of over $6,000. That’s an insane price, especially when […]

Survey: Millennials Most Likely to Waste Time Talking Politics

A few weeks ago, we discussed whether or not discussing politics at work was a good idea. In general, it's ill-advised because voices get raised, names get called, feelings get hurt, threats get made and you can be damn sure nothing gets resolved. These discussions also have the tendency to drag on, so what might've […]

Some Accounting Firms Going Out of Their Way to Discourage Employees From Becoming CPAs

You'd think with all the worrying going on in the accounting profession about talent and succession, that firms would be making it easy on the employees they do have to become CPAs. And I think, for the most part, many firms do encourage prospective CPAs with exam prep and exam fee reimbursement, time off to […]

How Would Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton Fit Into Public Accounting? A Brief Analysis

I don't imagine that too many people have given much thought to how Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton would fit into the accounting profession, but Peter Reilly did and I'm grateful:  The only two roles I could see for Trump in public accounting are client from hell or managing partner. Public accounting firms at the […]

Accountants Edge Out Car Salesmen, Personal Trainers in the Dating Pool: Survey

For some unbeknownst reason, Xero surveyed 3,500 people in the US, UK, Australia and New Zealand about their "attitudes and perceptions of accountants and bookkeepers." As if they were going to discover something other than this: Professional stereotypes about the accounting industry are alive and kicking, with a new global survey from Xero revealing that […]

Will KPMG Join Wells Fargo in its Walk of Shame?

In 2011, Going Concern speculated about potential issues with internal controls at Wells Fargo that prompted the then CFO, Howard Atkins, to abandon ship. Just a little foreshadowing of what is happening to good ol’ Wells this month. If you haven’t been following the news, here’s the scoop: Over the last 5 years a handful […]

Here’s How the Accounting Profession’s Political Action Committees Have Been Spending Their Money

With less than two months left until Election Day, you might be wondering, “How much money have accounting firms been throwing around this election cycle?” No? Just me? Okay, then, well this should be fun. Here’s what Open Secrets, a website run by the Center of Responsive Politics, has for contributions by the accounting industry’s […]

PwC Defense Attorney Putting a Lot of Faith in a Florida Jury

Starting Monday, PwC will go trial in Florida over a financial crisis-era case. The plaintiff is the bankruptcy trustee for Taylor Bean and Whitaker Mortgage Corp, who is seeking $5.5 billion in damages, claiming that "PwC was negligent in not detecting a massive fraud scheme that brought down Taylor Bean and helped trigger the 2009 […]

Millennial Health Watch: Keep Extra Large Binder Clips Around, Just in Case

For the past few years, health experts have been warning anyone within earshot that all the sitting we've been doing will be the death of us all. In more recent health news pointed directly at soft and supple-handed white-collar professionals, your grip is being called into question: Young adults in the United States are losing […]

Adapting Agile Project Management to Your Accounting Firm

One of the most difficult problems to solve in client services is how to scope and estimate work properly so that everyone wins. I have to be realistic with our capacity, my team’s skillset, and their time – three things that are difficult to balance. Our client needs to feel like they are part of […]

Don’t Attempt to Steal a CPA Exam Study Book and Expect the Owner to Take It Lightly

Normally, this should all go without saying, but apparently not everyone knows the rules, as evidenced by a report out of Fayetteville, Arkansas: Victor Rudsell walked out to his car on the 1900 block of North Garland Ave. Monday morning, when he saw Joshua Pry inside his car, the report says. Rudsell saw Pry wearing […]

IASB Chairman Not Giving EBITDA the Time of Day

The International Accounting Standards Board thinks it's high time that we all got back to basics. Too much of this non-GAAP nonsense has people thinking they can just throw some numbers around and put labels on 'em. Well, IASB chairman Hans Hoogersvorst, for one, is ready to tighten things up a bit: The IASB, which […]

Millennials Just Want Some Peace and F’n Quiet at Work Already

Among the many stereotypes thrust upon Millennials is their overwhelming desire to be collaborative. For Millennial begrudgers, the sight of a chattering team of 20/30-somethings is like fingernails on a chalkboard. However! A recent survey from Oxford Economics found that actually Millennials would like everyone to buzz off so they could get some work done: […]

New Ethics Rules for Accountants Not Impressing Everyone

Can you ever have too many ethics rules? I don't know if there's a good way to answer that question, but the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants has been working real hard on some new ones that will roll out this week: The International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants plans to release new standards […]

Tim, The White Walkers’ Accountant, Is Here to Keep Winter Coming

I'm sure I've mentioned this before, but one of the most enjoyable aspects of this job is stumbling across weird things on the internet and sharing them with you fine people. Today, I'm happy to report that there is a video featuring an accountant for the army of the dead from Game of Thrones. This […]

Reminder: Voting on AICPA-CIMA Merger Ends Tomorrow

This hit my inbox today via an AICPA newsletter: Voting closes tomorrowWe're in the final hours. Voting on the AICPA member ballot closes tomorrow, June 16, at 5 p.m. ET. If you haven't done so already, I strongly encourage you to take just a minute to vote. We have so much to be proud of […]

Irrational Clients – Yours, Mine and Ours

As a serious professional you often come across irrational clients. Behavior that’s obviously wrong makes complete sense to them. Sometimes it’s your own clients who have irrational clients as customers. You need to talk them down off the ledge. Here are a few examples. It’s Not Lying if I Neglect to Tell You Something — […]

Even a State Board of CPAs Isn’t Immune From Weak Internal Controls

Anyone hoping for a heavy dose of irony to start their week is going to enjoy this next story. Earlier this month, a tipster pointed us to a press release from the Louisiana Legislative Auditor who found issues with the internal controls at the Louisiana State Board of CPAs, "the entity responsible for licensing and […]

Announcing the Certified Pervert Accountant Awards (aka The C[ree]PAs)

It's a tale as old as time: some accountants are perverts. Back in 2011, Jr Deputy Accountant wrote about SEC accountants browsing through porn at work. A few weeks ago, Caleb brought you the story of the accounting trainee who sent abusive texts and photos depicting disturbing sex scenes. Etc. Etc. Etc. Today I decided […]

Is SOC Report Branding Just Alphabet Soup?

SAS 70 isn’t a thing anymore and hasn’t been for awhile. SSAE 16 superseded the SAS 70 pronouncement in 2011. However, outside of a relatively small cohort of practitioners, how many people actually understand the SOC 1, SOC 2, SOC 3 branding? You guessed it… hardly anyone. And it has been 6 years. I know […]

Someone Should Audit NASBA’s CPA Headcount

Trust but verify! New statistic: How many active #CPAs are there? https://t.co/HaNCD61YrV #accounting pic.twitter.com/Oll8yVutP0 — NASBA (@NASBA) May 25, 2016 This is just too good. A tickmark with an explanation. And there's further explanation on the NASBA website: This statistic is derived from the national database of CPAs, the Accountancy Licensee Database (ALD), and is […]

KPMG to Keep Phil Mickelson in Hats for Foreseeable Future

KPMG is standing by their golfing man. In the aftermath of the news that Phil Mickelson was named as a relief defendant in the SEC's civil lawsuit against famed gambler William "Billy" Walters and Dean Foods chairman Thomas Davis, all of Phil's corporate sponsors are hanging in there. Most notably for our purposes, KPMG issued […]

A Thing We Desperately Wish Were Real: A Photo of Phil Mickelson and Ex-KPMG Partner Scott London Yukking It Up

Texas A&M professor Mike Shaub put the idea in our heads and now we can't get it out: Waiting for the photo of Scott London and Phil Mickelson laughing at a firm event in T minus 5, 4, 3…. And it will be totally irrelevant. — Mike Shaub (@mikeshaub) May 19, 2016 Irrelevant or not, […]

Accountant May Have Mixed Up Her ‘Grocery’ and ‘Buy With Stolen Money’ Lists

Maybe it's because I read a lot of "accountant embezzled funds" articles, but I'm increasingly disappointed in the spending habits of hapless accountants who help themselves to their employers money. The scheme hatched by your average embezzling accountant isn't often well thought out, so I'd expect them to make equally reckless purchases. Sadly, more often […]

What’s the Future of the CPA Brand?

Brand is one of those business concepts that everyone knows about but few understand. When people talk about the Apple BRAND every murmurs approvement and nods as if to say, “That’s a strong brand!” but they’d have a hard time explaining why.

It’s Only a Matter of Time Before Big 4 Firms Offer Legal Services in the US

One of the topics that we occasionally discuss around here is the Big 4 expanding into professional service areas that you wouldn't expect for an accounting firm. In the US, we've seen PwC and Deloitte build enormous digital agencies and just last month, EY announced a partnership with Adobe that will "expand [the firm's] digital […]

Accounting Firm Is Giving Away Paul McCartney Tickets to a Handful of Able-Bodied Auditors

This is what it’s come to: Attention audit senior associates and managers. Connect with Lurie and receive two Paul McCartney row 12 tickets for the Thursday, May 5th concert!  — “Maybe you’ll be amazed!” Meet with our Lurie assurance team before May 5th and then rock out with Paul McCartney of the Beatles at Target […]

AICPA to Senators: Don’t Even Think About Touching Cash-Basis Accounting

Maybe you've noticed, but there are a few things that grind the AICPA's gears: 1. Questioning the integrity of CPAs in a YouTube video, on the radio or anywhere for that matter. 2. Management accounting credentials that are not the CGMA. 3. Nationally syndicated columnists suggesting that anyone is more qualified than a CPA to […]

Don’t Forget: Voting on the AICPA-CIMA Merger Starts on Monday

Over the last few years, we've watched the AICPA and CIMA hamfist the CGMA into our lives. The claim was that it would "raise the bar on management accounting" but all it really did was remind people of the cognitor fiasco from the late '90s/early '00s and invite lots and lots and lots of mockery […]

Surprisingly, Using Alternatives to ‘STFU, Donny’ in Meetings Not That Difficult

You know how some of your colleagues like to hijack a meeting with something unrelated and it throws everything off track? You know how you wish you could inform them that if they don't shut their big trap you'll be forced to rename them "Donny" so you can address them poignantly when they inevitably interrupt […]

Valeant Pretty Sure They Got This Now

Valeant, a pharmaceutical company better known for impressive feats of corporate chicanery that are in no way related to developing drugs, says that its ad-hoc review committee checked out its accounting and determined that everything's a-okay. Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. (NYSE: VRX and TSX: VRX) today announced that the ad hoc committee of the board […]

Let’s Review: Personalities, Reply Alls, TurboTax Boycott

Happy April Fools' Day. I really do wish there was a Duolingo Pillow. I also wish Going Concern could take Bitcoins, but I doubt people's feelings on that have changed much. But forget all that, let's squander the rest of this Friday afternoon, shall we? If you want to receive updates on this conversation, hit […]

It’s Probably Just a Coincidence That the Subject of an AICPA Newsletter Was ‘Learn How to Appreciate Staff’ on April Fools’ Day

A friend of GC forwarded us the AICPA News Update from this morning noting the subject line:   To save you eyestrain, it reads: Subject: Learn How to Appreciate Staff During Busy Season Editor’s Note During busy season, practitioners may find their lives temporarily become all work and no play. However, a number of firms […]

Texas Accountant Emerges as Early Contender for 2016’s Worst Person

Brad Harris, the founder and owner of Novus Health Care Services in Frisco, Texas, has been accused of some pretty terrible things in a FBI affidavit for a search warrant obtained by a local affiliate. Specifically, Harris allegedly instructed nurses to give hospice patients overdoses of medications like morphine to hasten their deaths: Harris, an […]

AICPA and CIMA Putting This New Thing to Members for a Vote

Back in November we learned that the joint venture between the AICPA and CIMA that brought the CGMA into the world would experiencing a "natural evolution" into something else. While it sounded a lot like a merger, it's a couple of associations, so it's not really a merger, AICPA President, CEO and chocolate bunny sculptor […]