June 22, 2018

Those Annoying Recruiter Calls Might Be Slowing Down Next Quarter

In a few weeks, many of you plugging along through busy season will decide to call those incessant recruiters back and test the job market. Last week's report by Robert Half and published in the Journal of Accountancy miiiiight rain on your parade, at least in the short term. 

Ninety-one percent of CFOs said they don’t expect to change their accounting and finance staffing levels in the second quarter; 4% plan to add staff; and 5% plan to reduce staff. The net decrease of 1 percentage point marked the first time since the third quarter of 2010 that the percentage of CFOs planning to reduce staff outnumbered those who expected to add staff.

This occurred even though 27% of respondents said they were very confident and 64% were somewhat confident in their second-quarter business prospects. More than 1,400 CFOs responded to the survey.

Is this a serious cause for concern?  Meh, it's nothing like the Double Black Diamond-like falloff in '08 and '09.  Jobs are simply taking longer to fill because it is a strong employers' market. For companies running on a 12/31/XX year-end, many approve hiring budgets with the turn of the new year; these jobs can take months to fill.  Fear not job seekers – the US News paints a rosy picture for the future:

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 15.7 percent growth for accountants between 2010 and 2020, which is much faster than the average growth for most other professions. An additional 190,700 accounting and auditing jobs will need to be filled during that time period. The profession's promising outlook has earned it the No. 21 spot on the Best Jobs of 2012 list.

So maybe those calls won’t be stopping anytime soon.  For those of you on the job hunt right now, what are you seeing? 

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Can We Stop Pretending That Fair Value Convergence Is Possible?

FASB IASB.jpgAnyone okay if we just called this whole convergence thing off? Seriously. We understand that many accountants are perfectionists but healthcare reform seems to have a better chance than this whole shitshow.
Yesterday’s Wall St. Journal claims that the FASB’s biggest wig, Bob Herz is stating, albeit implicitly, that the FASB’s fair value rule will be more strict than the IASB’s. Herz-dog, being a little more political put it this way:
Pleasant disagreement, after the jump

“I hope we can come up with something that both achieves convergence and improves the current state” of accounting rules, Herz said at a roundtable discussion on the fair-value issue at FASB headquarters. “We’re obviously keenly aware of the difficulties of achieving both goals together.”
Herz later said in an interview that while FASB would do its best to harmonize its approach and the IASB’s, “we also want to make sure we come up with a good answer” to improve financial statements that U.S. investors look to.

That’s about as combative as The Herz gets, although, we, like the Journal, will take any chance we can get to embellish otherwise, yawn-worthy comments made by wonky accounting bureaucrats.
More:

John Smith, an IASB member who also participated in the roundtable, said both boards will try to agree on a fair-value rule, but each has its own process to follow, and “at the end of the day, we won’t know until we finish the process.”
The difficulty in harmonizing the two approaches stems from the sharp disagreements over expanding the use of fair-value accounting. Smith called it “a religious war.”

Okay, so we’re not really convinced these guys give a damn either way if accounting rule convergence occurs, especially fair value. So would everyone just knock it off and quit pretending like it’s so bloody important?
Besides, this is a “religious war”. And everyone knows that wars in the name of the Almighty (in this case, GAAP) NEVER end, so let’s just count on this being unresolved through the next millennia.

Job of the Week: Do You Have a Preternatural Ability for GAAP Disclosures?

hire me2.jpgSince there seems to be some unhappy campers out there we’ll take a moment of your day to tell you about a position that might make you less miserable or hopefully better compensated:
Company: Morgan Stanley
Location: New York
Title: Associate/Manager
Description: Associate or Manager for our Legal Entity Accounting & Disclosure Group. Responsibilities will include gaining an understanding of the firm’s equity financing products, derivatives and securities lending business in order to assist in producing and analyzing many of the division’s financial accounting disclosures.
Skills Required: BS or BA in Finance and/or Accounting, CPA preferred; 3-5 years of experience in Public Accounting and/or financial services industry; Must have thorough understanding of FAS 133, FAS 140, FIN 46, FAS 157 and FAS 161 FASB pronouncements
See the full description at the GC Career Center and if this position doesn’t tickle your get your ass off the couch/ship-jumping bone, go to the main page and find your next temporary dream job.