December 11, 2018

Disappointment

UK Auditor Regulator Stops Short of Calling Grant Thornton Audits ‘God-Awful’

The PCAOB inspection report for Grant Thornton, while worse in susbtance, doesn't quite express the feelings of a regulator who expects a little more.  A report from the UK accountancy watchdog said it was “disappointed” to find that five of the eight Grant Thornton audits it reviewed required either improvements or significant improvements, a blow […]

Auditors of Broker-Dealers Are Letting Us All Down

COME ON, YOU GUYS. You're making EY look really good and that is no small feat. Here's what PCAOB Member Jay Hanson had to say during the call with reporters about the Board's second progress report on interim inspection program for broker and dealer auditors:  “The number of firms and audits inspected are greater than […]

MP Really Disappointed with Big 4’s Life Choices

Margaret Hodge, chairman of the House of Commons public accounts committee, told specialists from PwC, Deloitte, Ernst & Young and KPMG that their skills ought to be directed to nobler ends than minimising tax bills for big business.“What really depresses me is you could contribute so much to society and the public good and you […]

Compensation Watch ’12: Disappointment at Deloitte – UPDATE: Also, Offended!

After sending out a few fluffer posts in July to get everyone worked up, we've heard from a couple of people who had their compensation discussions today. So far the news has come from one audit and one advisory professional out of NYC. As is typical with many of you who send in tips, the […]

Compensation and Bonus Watch ’12: Deloitte Audit

As you recall, last week we went over the Deloitte AERS Advisory group's compensation numbers. Today, we have more comp data to share, this time for the opiners. Unfortunately, we don't have the financial results slide but most of all the other details will be included in this post. Let's get right to it, shall […]

A Brief Word on the Going Concern Freelancer Search

Alright, you guys know me so I'm not going to mince words here but let's just say the entries we've gotten thus far for the Going Concern freelancer spot have been, well, kinda sad. Dismal. Depressing. Pathetic, even. Do any of you actually read the site? Sure, there are a few gems (you'll be hearing […]

Sir David Tweedie’s Accounting Rock Star Status Is Safe Despite His Failure to Converge Standards

In case you forgot, Sir David Tweedie is retiring next week as the head of the IASB. It’s been quite a run for Tweeds and good money says his friends at the Board will send him off in style worthy of a knighted Scotsman (read: getting him blind drunk and some hooliganism). He’s had many accomplishments in his time running the IASB but there’s one goal that will ultimately elude him when he hangs up the eyeshade. That is the dream of converged accounting standards. It certainly has been a noble quest worthy of his accounting “rock star” status but you can’t help but imagine that you might happen across SDT in a pub muttering to himself over a pint about “the one that got away.”

Sir David’s biggest project has been convergence of IASB’s rules with those of America’s Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB). The two had set a June deadline, timed to coincide with Sir David’s retirement, to iron out their differences. That won’t be met.

Just because he won’t reach his ultimate goal that doesn’t mean Tweeds hasn’t tried. Or been BEEN INFINITELY FUCKING PATIENT with the Yanks.

But you can’t do it all. So now the task of accounting rule copulation will now fall to Dutchman Hans Hoogevorst but if Sir David is feeling a little like a failure, he should know that there are people out there still think he’s pretty badass since he got the SEC to come to the table:

Sir David should not be too disappointed that convergence is not complete. That the process has come as far as it has—and that America’s Securities and Exchange Commission might decide later this year to adopt IASB’s standards—is something no one could have predicted ten years ago, says Nigel Sleigh-Johnson of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales.

So enjoy your retirement, oh knighted one. Your double-entry immortality is secure.

The balladeer of the balance-sheet [The Economist]

Can a Future Big 4 Associate Expect a Salary Adjustment When He Starts Work?

Welcome to the aren’t-you-glad-healthcare-reform-is-back-in-the-news? edition of Accounting Career Emergencies. In today’s edition, should an incoming associate expect a salary adjustment on day one or they doomed to a pittance?

Find yourself in a jam at work? Do you have eight hours to spare and aren’t sure how to best spend this rare free time? Wondering what you should get Sharon Allen for a retirement gift? Email us at [email protected] and we’ll make sure you stay away from vacuum cleaners.

Returning to our Big 4 in waiting:

Can I expect to have my salary adjusted to market when I start employment? I will be starting in 2011. Reading through some of the articles and comments on here, it seems that new hires easily start with a salary above $50K. I received three offers from three Big 4 firms but all offered salaries were relatively far from $50K.

Each firm was within 1K-1.5K range from each other though. I know that starting salaries have even decreased in my area overall. I am not enjoying the thought of making less than what these firms have proven to have the potential to offer, or even making less than what another firm had to offer (although I knew that was the outcome by choosing this firm). I personally do not think it is worth asking for a raise or a salary adjustment since I feel that would only hurt my future annual raises. Should I just wait it out and see?

[Doubled over, catching breath, holding up hand with ‘I need a minute’]

Oh, dear. We had to take a break for a second, in fact our face hurts from laughing uncontrollably. Sorry about that.

Look friend, we don’t mean to make light of your question but a reality check is necessary here. There is virtually no chance that your firm will adjust to your salary when you start. You write, “I am not enjoying the thought of making less than what these firms have proven to have the potential to offer, or even making less than what another firm had to offer (although I knew that was the outcome by choosing this firm).”

We find this confusing for a couple of reasons – 1) obviously the Big 4 have “proven to have the potential” to pay more than $50k. It just happens this is occurring in a place where you don’t currently reside. If you did reside in one these places, your starting salary would eclipse the magical $50k. Were you expecting a big city salary for your mid-sized city lifestyle? 2) if you don’t like the idea of earning less money, why did you go with the firm that offered you less money? This simply doesn’t compute.

If making $50,000 is such a sticking point for you, move to a city with a higher cost of living so that you can eclipse the magic number you so desperately desire. If that’s not reasonable, then the best you can hope for is a pleasant surprise like PwC gave its recently hired peeps ($500 bonus for those hired post-June 30, 2010).

This may sound crazy but don’t get too caught up in what your salary is at the beginning of your career. So, to answer your question – sit tight and start your career. It’s a little early to be bitching about being underpaid when you haven’t billed a single hour.

Comp Watch ’10: KPMG Town Hall Results in More Questions Than Answers

After hearing that KPMG was following suit with a mid-year compensation surprise, we’ve now been tipped that any hope you had of seeing a little extra moolah has been crushed:

Last night was KPMG’s New York Office (NYO) townhall meeting. During this meeting, close to 2,000 NYO employees of the firm gathered in a hotel in Time Square to listen to a series of presentations from the CEO, COO and Office Managing Partner (OMP). During this four hour presentation, they covered an array of topics, including: compensation and benefits, technology, etc.

Depsite hearing that the firm will be allowing staff (associates and senior associates) have KPMG email access on their iPhone, Android or BlackBerry phones, no further details were provided about what they will be paying for, if anything.

They also announced that they were keeping up with the average regarding compensation, but made it a point to mention that with every average, someone must be below the average, hinting that we were that someone. After finding out that there will be no mid-year bonsues or raises, some left the meeting rather disappointed… at least there was free booze and food (like any other normal KPMG event).

But wait! This sounded a little weird to us since our sources on the original story were solid, so we checked in with another source who told us the message was simply non-committal, “They didn’t really confirm/deny what was going to happen with the mid-year stuff.”

So all this “Yes? No? Maybe so,” probably isn’t so helpful but that’s where things appear to stand.

Back to our original tipster, who is now hearing talk of next fall’s associates receiving a boost in their starting salaries:

Later that evening, however, many of the recent hires (new associates in 2010) were beginning to hear that the 2011 new hires (for next year) were already receiveing salary adjustments (upwards into the $60,000’s), in addition to their already higher starting salaries and sign-on bonuses.

So my question is: Does KPMG plan on compensating the new associates (that started in 2010) that did not receive a sign-on bonus this year, or perhaps have any plans to bring their salary closer towards the industry average?

Starting salaries have been consistently rising over the years and with increased competition among the firms for the best recruits, you can expect that to continue. Whether that results in adjustments for KPMG’s latest class of new associates remains to be seen, since a mid-year surprise is still uncertain. We should say, however, expecting more money after being on the job for 2-3 months is a little presumptuous. We understand the frustration but, seriously? You can barely open Excel at this point.

As you hear more regarding the mid-year compensation (or lack thereof) email us with the scoop.

More KPMG Comp News: For Some In Chicago, Expectations Are More or Less Met

Some of you may have heard enough KPMG compensation news but judging by traffic patterns, most of you have not. And reports are still coming in, so it’d be a disservice to keep you in the dark.

The latest news out of Chicago:

This info is for Chicago, Audit. Most of us had our talks Thursday or Friday, however I hear that some are still continuing into Monday.

A2 to SA1, SP+ rating, received 10% raise and 2% bonus. Same level, EP rating, received 13% raise and 5% bonus. I am also finding out that SP vs. SP+ has no difference at all. This is based on a salary of $56,000 which was our original starting salary (also included a $5000 sign on bonus) as we received no raise last year. This is pretty much in line with what the now S2’s received over the past couple years, as they got 5% raise after their first year and 5% raise for being promoted to senior last year when everyone’s salaries “stayed flat” as my partner put it. What I would really like to know is what A1’s to A2’s received, as last year they had the same starting salary and bonus as what I began with, so they were essentially making more than A2’s for an entire year due to the bonus.

SA 2 to SA3, EP rating, 8% raise and 5% bonus. My managers also don’t seem to excited, but I obviously did not ask them what their actual numbers are.

I believe everyone on my team feels this is what they expected raise wise, but are rather disappointed with the bonuses. Some additional information, raise numbers are consistent across all business units within the office.

It’s also our understanding that convos are still going on in New York this week, so continue to keep us updated.

Accountants Disgust Charlie Munger on a Multitude of Levels

If you piss off a billionaire, there will be repercussions. And Charlie Munger is not a typical billionaire.

He just so happens to be the BFF and business partner of the second richest person in this fair land of ours and since WB is too busy chasing tail with new friends, he recently felt the need to vent at the University of Michigan about, among other things, accountants and how they failed. FAILED US ALL!

The accountants utterly failed us. And by the way, there’s practically no sign of any intelligent reversal of the failure of that profession. I have yet to meet many accountants who are the least bit ashamed for their contribution to our recent troubles. But it was immense. Imagine when Enron comes down to the SEC and says “we want to write a little contract with A, and a little contract with B, and take all the profit we’re going to make from these complicated contracts over the next 20 years into earnings immediately, and put an asset on our balance sheet of $28 billion from signing two pieces of paper.” And the SEC, led by wonderful accountants who studied at great places, [says] “Why, of course you should have that kind of accounting!” What the hell were they thinking? How can anybody have any respectable understanding of human nature without realizing that the kind of people who were going to be tempted by that accounting were not going to be able to resist the temptations? It was disgusting.

Now you might think this is one of those situations where the old man says to you, “I’m not mad, I’m just disappointed.” This is bullshit. Charlie Munger is definitely pissed. He’s not putting all the blame at the doorstep of accountants but you definitely get the impression that if he could, he would.

But why? Why would Mungsy be so pissed? Why would he lump you in with likes of Jimmy Carter, Ryan Leaf and Andy Barker, P.I. (an accountant, no less)? Basically it’s because you people are a bunch of pansies, will politely nod to the whims of the clients you serve and that you’re a bunch of numbers nerds and that you can barely carry on a conversation with another human being let alone understand that greed trumps Debits = Credits:

Partly the establishment accountants want to please the people who are writing the checks. And partly the academic accountants get full of people who overdosed on mathematics. They want everything to be in balance. And they don’t think that that really isn’t rational when creating rules for a human behavioral system. They’re too mathematical and not rational enough when dealing with their fellow humans. You can’t give the average Wall Street CEO really lenient standards of accounting and expect the figures to be good.

Here endeth the lesson.

Charlie Munger on Communism, Botox, and Goldbug Jerks [Motley Fool]

Compensation Watch ’10: Early Returns from Deloitte Are In

The first reports of Deloitte raises for audit professionals have come in from the Mid-America Region:

I’m surprised to see absolutely nothing posted about Deloitte raises. We have had the raise discussions in my office for staff and seniors, no double digit raises in sight. AIP (bonus) for Seniors and above. Managers- TBA.

Mid America Region- it’s looking like 2-9% for staff/seniors. AIP is supposed to be in the range of 2-12%, but that is the range for both seniors and managers. I spoke with a friend in another office in my region and their raises are looking pretty consistent, if not lower. Starting salaries are frozen- start classes from fall 09, 10, 11 will all at the same rate.

This is the earliest word we’ve received and comments have suggested that more news would come early next week. The tax practice still has their town halls next Tuesday but that could be to explain the numbers if in fact they are similar to audit’s.

So this could be a John Kerry-esque exit polls effect or maybe this is a sign of things to come. Either way, if you’ve gotten word, discuss below and keep us updated with any developments.

Live Blogging the Overstock.com Q2 Earnings Call

Your friendly Human Resources Professional Daniel W. Braddock will be joining me today for this particular Overstock powwow. He and I will be chatting live and I’ll be updating periodically. You can listen yourself by calling here: dial (866) 551-1816 and enter conference ID 90318167 when prompted and chime aniel: I’m in
President here we go
ahhhhh speaker phone.
it’s like these guys have never been on a conference call before
me: i’m not in yet
Daniel: you’re missing the legal mumbo jumbo
me: proceed with commentary until i get on
Daniel: He’s recommending having the q2 and 10Q/K available as references
Jonathan hands over to Steve
me: oh that’s a relief
Daniel: Revenue up 32% from q2 ’09 to ’10
gross margin way down
shocker
me: I’m on! And yes, it’s a snoozer so far but the balance sheet is sound! Whatever that means.


Daniel: slide deck? what slide deck?
off to slide 4 already?
help!
me: Jesus
I can’t follow this
Slide 5?
Anyone else having trouble keeping up?
Daniel: Who is this guy? Used the word “starch” to describe cash flow
Pretty sure he just tripped over slide five and fell on slide 6
whatever that mean
means*
3:11 pm me: Good grief
they’re talking GAAP
thin ice boys
very thin ice
Daniel: and no one knows if their numbers are an all-time high or not
me: well
Daniel: you have THREE years of numbers to remember
me: memory is a tricky thing if you’re on medication
i kid Patrick
I kid
Nothing but love
Daniel: Pretty sure slide 10 was removed from the presentation…
me: You’re looking at the slides?
Daniel: From an HR/public speaking perspective this man is atrocious

3:15 pm; me: Christ
the customer satisfaction poll
again?
Old news guys
Daniel: When you only have a few cards in your back pocket, you must re-use
Daniel: Have you ever purchased anything off of Overstock.com?
me: God no
Patrick is wrapping up already
Daniel: Is he wrapping up or is he getting the hook?
me: Btw, Sam is live tweeting the call, you can follow it here:
Daniel: IS THE WINDOW OPEN??
me: http://twitter.com/SamAntar
Daniel: I HEAR TRAFFIC OUTSIDE
me: “there’s not a person in this company that knows what Wall St.’s numbers are”
That’s amazing
Shareholders are you listening?
me: Questions
coming up
Bueller?
Bueller?
Jesus
no questions?
Daniel: You need investors first
me: Matt Schindler
BofA
or maybe not
who is this guy?
Daniel: Trends in spending
on Overstock? Try suits from 1997
me: Apparently Sam’s phone number is blocked
Sam, I hate to say it but I’m not surprised
Intelligence on the site?
Come on people
Is that it?
“it’s nice talking to smart owners”
End of call
Jesus man
Daniel: That was painful
me: Thoughts?
is there a holiday today that I’m not aware of?
Daniel: I simply think people do not care about the current state of this company
from a management perspective – good LORD were they unorganized.
Byrne spoke like he was conversing with close colleagues: lingo was very internalized; assumptions about background were made.
How you are not able to call on basic numbers from two years ago boggles my mind as well.
me: They blocked off an hour for that?
I feel gypped.
Not even 30 minutes
I think we were on to something skipping the Q1 call
Daniel: Welcome to Wall Street in August
me: Good point
See you for Q3 I guess
Maybe Sam will have more on this dumped stock
by then
Daniel: Here’s hoping.

RSM McGladrey Can Explain the Disappointing Year

H&R Block announced its earnings for fiscal 2010 yesterday which included the details for the fka RSM McGladrey. The company’s press release basically says that times are tough but RSM had some good reasons for that.


For starters, the small tiff with M&P sort of put a damper on things and a nasty goodwill write-off:

RSM McGladrey reported fiscal 2010 pretax income of $58.7 million, down nearly 39 percent from $96.1 million in the prior year. Revenues declined 4.2 percent to $860.3 million, primarily due to the impact of the overall weak economic environment, which continues to pressure billable rates and hours within the industry. Profitability was negatively impacted by costs associated with previously resolved arbitration proceedings involving McGladrey & Pullen and other costs of litigation totaling $14.5 million in the aggregate, as well as a $15.0 million goodwill impairment charge at our capital markets business unit.

A 39% drop in profits could explain the nationwide layoffs at McGladrey that we reported on earlier this month. It’s a good thing they didn’t have the ginormous golf cake in this year’s numbers, otherwise the results would have been worse.

But if you ignore all that, things were essentially flat and everyone knows that flat is the new up!

Excluding these charges, pretax income would have been approximately $88 million and pretax margin for the segment would have been 10.3 percent, essentially flat with the prior year. The shortfall in revenues was partially mitigated by cost reduction efforts throughout the year. These efforts included headcount reductions to reflect lower client demand, as well as other non-client facing cost reduction initiatives.

OH! There’s the layoffs and they’re citing “lower client demand.” Thoughts on that, anyone?

H&R Block Reports Fiscal 2010 Financial Results [Market Wire]

The BNY Mellon CFO Isn’t Mad at Andrew Cuomo…

…just disappointed about Andy getting all sue-y over BNY Mellon’s Ivy Asset Management’s involvement with Berns Madoff, which will result in more money going to – SHOCK – lawyers.

Bank of New York Mellon Corp.’s (BK) Chief Financial Officer Todd Gibbons told investors Wednesday that the company is “a bit disappointed” about the New York Attorney General’s decision to file a law suit against the bank related to Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi-scheme.

But as a result of the suit, and the current environment more broadly, legal cost are expected to run higher, the CFO said at UBS AG’s (UBS) Global Financial Services Conference in New York.

KPMG Advisory Has Another Potentially Awkward Meeting, Sans Dog

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for PomeranianSP1324.jpgIf you’ve been hanging around these parts long, you’ll remember back in the fall when Klynveldians were sitting down for their compensation discussions which gave birth to one of our favorite mascots. All professionals in the Southeast region of the advisory practice witnessed an awkward moment when the then partner-in-charge of advisory phoned in, along with his dog, to break the news to the troops that they weren’t getting squat for raises.
Well today, there’s another call down in the Southeast — the “SE Advisory Market Development Staff Update Call” to be precise — and apparently there’s more bad news. It seems that the SE advisory practice (the largest in the firm, according to one source) is a bit behind on its revenue targets for the first three months of the new fiscal year and January isn’t shaping up so well either. The actual revenues are trailing the planned targets by approximately 15%, according to slides from the presentation obtained by GC.


Sources have indicated that while there is significant pipeline revenues, as of January 11th, only ten percent have either verbally committed to an engagement or are currently being negotiated. More than one-third of the pipeline is classified as being in the “identification” stage which is largest group. Now perhaps that is a normal ratio but another slide indicated that the number of client wins are on pace to be down considerably (~50%) for the month of January as compared to the prior three months.
One of our sources indicated to us that a major problem is that “identification” of a potential client was enough to have it included in the pipeline. In other words, if your Pomeranian sniffs a Boston Terrier’s ass at the dog run and you talk shop with the owner of said Boston T, that person is more or less in the pipeline. The conversion of the BT apparently is not crucial and even if the Boston Terrier is converted to realized revenue, it was a far smaller percentage than initially estimated.
The problem, as it appears to us, is that business in the advisory practice in the Southeast could be drying up (or maybe just getting more competitive) and that conversion of potential business is slipping. It’s far too early in the fiscal year to speculate — but by all means go right ahead — about what this all will mean and if business picks up, then it will be moot. But after the shake-ups that went down in that part of the country, the pressure is most certainly on.
If you were on the call today or have more insight, discuss and get in touch.

Open Thread: CPA Exam Pass Rates for 2009

Cumulative scores under 50%? Sigh. You really packed it in at the end didn’t you? Don’t worry, we still believe in you (click to enlarge):
Picture 2.png
All this does is reinforce the idea that you need to be paying attention to what the JDA tells you every week in >75.
Discuss the past, the future, the section that is your sworn nemesis, the story about the taking your last section on the last day of the eighteenth month. Whatever you like. It’s fine if you have to cry a little bit.

>75: Procrastination

Procrastinate.jpgEditor’s note: This is the latest edition of >75, our weekly post on questions that you have related to the CPA Exam. Send your questions to [email protected] and we’ll do our best to answer as many of them as possible. You can see all of the JDA’s posts for GC here and all our posts related to the CPA Exam here.
First of all, I have to give it to all of you little future CPAs of America, you REALLY know how to put things off until the last minute, don’t you?
I’m going to let you in on a tiny little secret: the exam never goes away.
Let me paint an “imaginary” scenario where CPA Review classes are starting in less than 48 hours. Classes have been on hold for over two months and suddenly, within this 48 hour period, there is a rush of panicked CPA exam candidates realizing they’ve got less than a day left to figure out a plan. Anyone else see what’s wrong with this picture?
I’m not talking about a handful of people, I’m talking about a significant chunk of you. You know who you are and you know exactly what I’m talking about.


So what is it? Do you believe that the exam will pass itself? Or if you put it off long enough somehow you’ll wake up one day a CPA? I hate to break it to you but that’s really moronic.
There are students in our classes that are 50-some years old. Think about that. They graduated 30 years ago and are STILL putting this stupid ass exam off. So don’t think you’re some hero of procrastination just because you let 18 months go by and started losing exam scores, you aren’t special.
The bottom line is this: it is all about what you want to do with your life. Do you really want to be a CPA? Then you’ll suck it up and finish. Don’t do it because your parents want it or your girlfriend wants it or it’s your grandma’s dying wish. You are only setting yourself up for a life of half-assed failure, misery, and disappointment.
Which is kind of like what you’re setting yourself up for with a CPA and a career in public accounting except + tchotchkes. Win* (I think).
Point is, stop. In the time it takes for you to come up with 1000 excuses, you could have already booked your exam and gotten through at least 150 MCQ. Yes, it sucks but guess what? You picked it. You can make it worse on yourself and be that 50 year old guy in the back of our Live class or you can just get through it and stop bitching.
/end rant. Do it.
*I’m obligated to say that because of my day job

And Here We Thought All Accountant Bloggers Were Doing It for the Forces of Good

Thumbnail image for integrity.jpgThe gamut of accounting bloggers that we’re acquainted with are good people despite their individual proclivities. Things like paranoid fantasies that involve every level of government bureaucracy (we’re looking straight at you, JDA) and perverse obsessions with stilettos that even freak us out (ahem, Francine) don’t make anyone a bad person, just well, weird.
That being said, it was only a matter of time before an accountant/blogger actually turned out to be criminal*.


Russ Fox at Taxable Talk:

About a year ago I discover a tax blog called Apirl15.com. I doubt we’ll be seeing any more of this blog; according to an affidavit from an IRS Special Agent, the proprietor of the blog has admitted to embezzling $8.5 million.
William Murray, a CPA from Sacramento, allegedly told his clients to pay their taxes through a “trust account” system. This “service” would help the clients and make things easier for them. Mr. Murray also allegedly had clients send money that he would allegedly “loan” to other clients.

William “No, not Bill” Murray used the client money for the run-of-the-mill stuff: cars, houses, entertainment (i.e. hookers, llelo), plus it’s alleged that he’s a degenerate gambler. A model citizen really.
Despite this blow to the accounting blogosphere image, you can sleep well knowing that if we ever ask for your money it will be used for the purposes of providing you with the finest accounting rag news publication possible. There are reputations at stake.
April 15th No More [Taxable Talk via Tax Update Blog]
*You were a criminal before you started blogging, Sam.

An Opportunity Lost

Thumbnail image for Holly.jpgGang, we’re a little upset about something today. Last week we told you about something that had the potential to turn awards for accountants on its green eyeshade wearing head.
Yes, we’re talking about the doomed Deloitte ballot sent out by Holly Leam-Taylor. Today would have been the day that she had sent out the results of her sluttiest future partner, hottest old man, et al. awards, if it had not been for her inexperience with sending out superficial emails about her colleagues.
If Holly had only consulted with someone, anyone with experience on such matters, they could have explained that Deloitte is not a place for such “fun” things and that using her work email was not the best way to solicit nominations.
Alas, our request for someone to pick up where Holly left off has been roundly ignored and here we are on a Friday with nothing to share about Deloitte’s hottest men in London.
So far we’ve been unable to track down Holly since her Deloitte email has been obliterated. Holly, if you’re out there, get in touch. We’ll get your side of the story out there. We know you’re fed up but this will be fun. We promise. Anyone else that can put us in touch with Holly, please help. We’re still getting over our disappointment.

More CPA Exam Scores Are Released for the October/November Window

Thumbnail image for fingers crossed.jpgNASBA has announced via Twitter that more scores have been released for the final window of the year. Bad news is that it takes 24 – 48 hours for them to post. Our recommendation would be to jump over to NASBA and spend the next 24 hours refreshing the page until it posts. Or chew your fingernails until they bleed, whatever works for you.
If you end up with an early Christmaskuh gift, please share. If you got coal, also share before you go into the corner sobbing.

KPMG Prolongs the Agony by Releasing Just UK Revenue Results

Thumbnail image for 200px-KPMG.svg.pngThose of you that are dancing on one leg for KPMG’s global revenue results are going to have suffer with the anxiety for awhile longer. We know, we know. We’d love for the whole reporting season to limp into history but we have yet to hear Tim Flynn put his positive spin on this year’s revenue results.
Oh sure, we’re getting teased today by the UK firm and its European parent but this just prolongs the agony:

The UK firm saw revenues fall by 1.6%, to £1.63bn for the 30 September year end.
Profits fell 1.3% to £382m from £387m.
KPMG Europe’s revenues were €3.5bn, a 0.4% decrease on the previous year.
Its joint chairmen said the results were a “creditable performance”.
“We might have hoped for better economic conditions in our second year as a merged firm but rather than put our expansion plans on hold we have continued to pursue a whole range of strategic initiatives that will shape our performance over future years,” said John Griffith-Jones and Rolf Nonnenmacher.

Despite the disappointment Even with this creditable performance, Europe wasn’t without its problems, seeing the tax revenues drop 12%. No worries though, they promise to pull their weight 2010:

After suffering a 12% fall in tax revenues, Griffith-Jones said the service line was set to hold firm with the rest of the business next year.
“We resized the practice, and are fine where we are, [it’s performance] should be much more in line with the rest of the firm – it’s taken the pain.”

That’s the spirit! Lemons into lemonade. Now make with the band-aid ripoff method on these global results. Nobody’s expecting the world. Dump the press release, get a pep talk from TF and get back out there Kylnveldians. Here’s to 2010!
KPMG UK chief lines up modest 2010 growth [Accountancy Age]

Does This Mean We Aren’t Going to Find Out Who’s Sleeping Their Way to Partner?

Dammit people, what’s with the amateurs? If you’re going to superficially judge your co-workers, wouldn’t common sense tell you to not to use a work email address?

Holly Leam-Taylor became the latest victim of a viral email craze when her light hearted message to colleagues spread like wildfire across the internet.

In the email, entitled Deloitte First year analysts Christmas Awards, sent on December 8, Ms Leam-Taylor asked her female colleagues to vote on which men in the office they considered most attractive.


A terribly disappointing turn of events, since it was all in good fun:

Miss Leam-Taylor, who studied at Warwick University before landing a place on the prestigious Deloitte graduate trainee scheme, said: “Obviously I never imagined the email would reach this level of awareness. Most people have recognised that what I wrote was in good spirit, but in retrospect I realise it probably wasn’t the best idea.
“It was my choice to resign and I will not be providing any further comment.”
Speaking at the family home in Staines, Middlesex, her father Andrew said: “She is very fed up about the whole thing.”

She’s fed up? What about the rest of us? We were expecting RESULTS.

Pictures, STD reports, the works. Now what the hell are we supposed to do? Is anyone willing to pick this up where poor Holly left off? If you do pick up the torch for crissakes, use a personal email address.

We cannot express our devastation further.

Analyst quits over embarrassing email [Telegraph]

KPMG Comp Discussions: Mid-Atlantic Says ‘No topic is off-limits’ and Possible Cuts in the Midwest

We’ve heard of at least one instance in the Detroit office where a manager’s pay was cut approximately 4%. At this time, it’s not clear if it will affect the entire Midwest region or just the Detriot office, so let us know the details for your office, regardless of location.
Meanwhile in the Mid-Atlantic, we received the text of an email that states that “no topic is off limits” in the comp discussion, which will hopefully invite some colorful discussion. If any other regions have a similar communiqu&eacute, kindly pass it along. We love reading emails. The text of the email that lists things that you should be prepared to discuss, appears after the jump.

During the week of October 4, our Midatlantic area Audit partners will be conducting Project Future discussions to address your individual compensation as well as personal and professional growth opportunities at KPMG. Project Future is an initiative that allows you to discuss various topics with firm leadership.
While the current state of the economy is on everyone’s mind, I encourage you to take this opportunity to share your experiences, interests, and short- and long-term career goals. You should also use this time to discuss the firm’s plan for growth, including new client opportunities and recent wins.
Remember, no topic is off-limits during the Project Future meetings, so bring your list of items to discuss. Here are a few items you should be prepared to talk about:
• Compensation
• Future engagement assignments, including your utilization, chargeability, and overtime hours
• Industry and career interests
• Your experience working for KPMG
• Personal and professional growth
• Tips on how to build a great career at KPMG
• Sabbatical program
• Promotion outlook
During the week of October 4, your assigned Project Future partner will contact you to schedule a convenient time to meet. If you don’t hear from your partner, please contact your local HR manager.
This is the fourth year we have conducted Project Future discussions, and I hope you continue to find value in meeting with your partners.
Thank you.

If you’re more comfortable discussing the points above here, please do so in the comments. And if you’ve got other suggestions of what you’d like to discuss, or care to expand on “Project Future” mention them as well and of course, share your euphoria or lack thereof with us after your sit-down.

BDO Seidman’s Revenue Disappoints Us

weisbaum.gifBDO Seidman’s revenue for the fiscal year end June 30 dropped nearly 6% to $620 million and dammit, we’re disappointed. Sure tax revenue is up 6% but assurance revenue was down 9% and consulting revenue was down over 15%. What’s the reason for this? According to BDO’s CEO Jack Weisbaum it’s…wait for it…yes, the recession. What a news flash.
According to Web CPA, BDO’s revenue breakdown is 60/25/10 for audit/tax/consulting and the remaining 5% is a grab bag of stuff. Point is, BDO is a whore for audit and considering how the whole Banco Espirito thing turned out…
Speaking of Portuguese banks, BDO is still on the hook for $522 million. No word on how that fits into the firm’s plans to bounce back in fiscal year 2010.
BDO Seidman Revenue Falls Due to Recession [Web CPA]