Bank of America: It Depends On How You Define Materiality

Posted by & filed under Accounting Principles, Advanced Accounting, All Articles, Auditing, Cost Accounting, Financial Accounting, Financial Reporting and Analysis, Financial Statement Analysis, Fraud Accounting, Intermediate Accounting, Managerial Accounting, Video Updates.

Bank of America incorrectly classified as much as $10.7 billion in short-term lending and repurchase deals for mortgage securities as sales. This claim surfaced in a May 13 letter to the SEC where the banking corporation alleges that the transactions were immaterial and that it would be beefing up its internal accounting controls.  This letter… Read more »

Scrushy Back in the News

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The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered a new review of the convictions in the government corruption case against former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman and ex-HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy. Questions: 1. What is the “honest services” fraud law? 2. What is a “quid pro quo” agreement? 3. A judge issued a $2.9 billion civil judgment… Read more »

Supreme Court Rules on Constitutionality of the PCAOB

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The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on June 28, 2010, that the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) violates the U.S. Constitution’s separation of powers principle because board members are not appointed by the president.  In a 5-4 decision, the Court stated that the president must have more power to remove PCAOB members. The five-member board… Read more »

Settlement for FCPA violation

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The SEC announced that it had reached a settlement with Technip for multiple violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). The SEC allegations focus on  Technip’s role as  a global engineering, construction and services company based in Paris, France in bribing Nigerian government officials over a 10-year period in order to win construction contracts in… Read more »

Barry Minkow in the News

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Barry Minkow was the famed entrepreneur who started ZZZZ Best in the 1980’s, only to have it collapse in 1987 under the weight of a discovered Ponzi scheme.  Minkow was convicted of fraud, among other charges, and sentenced to 25 years in prison, but only served 7 years. Minkow now is head of the Fraud… Read more »

Small Discrepancies Grow Into a Giant Fraud

Posted by & filed under Accounting Principles, Advanced Accounting, All Articles, Auditing, Cost Accounting, Financial Accounting, Financial Reporting and Analysis, Financial Statement Analysis, Fraud Accounting, IFRS, Intermediate Accounting, International Accounting, Managerial Accounting, Video Updates.

Satyam Computer Services, a leading Indian outsourcing company that served more than a third of the Fortune 500 companies, was at the heart of a huge 2009 fraud perpetrated through the significant inflation of earnings and falsification of accounts and assets for a number of years.  Chairman, Ramalinga Raju, resigned  in January 2009 after revealing that… Read more »

Madoff: Freedom in Prison?

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In an extended expose, the New York Magazine reported that Bernard Madoff described his scheme as a real nightmare to him, as if he were the real victim, and complained about little old ladies bugging him for money. The article goes on to describe his celebrity in prison among the other inmates and his “freedom”… Read more »

If You Are Planning to Work for Grant Thornton in Hawaii, Think Again.

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Accounting firm Grant Thornton is leaving the Hawaiian market this summer after more than 50 years, and selling its practice to two of the firm’s audit partners from the Honolulu office.  Several  established Big Four firms have preceded Grant Thornton in this exodus, including PricewaterhouseCoopers, who left in 2006 after 55 years. Questions: 1. What… Read more »

The Costs and Benefits of Simultaneous Audits for Multinational Companies

Posted by & filed under Accounting Principles, All Articles, Auditing, Cost Accounting, Financial Accounting, Financial Reporting and Analysis, Financial Statement Analysis, Fraud Accounting, IFRS, Intermediate Accounting, International Accounting, Managerial Accounting.

Simultaneous audits mean two separate exams, conducted by different governments, in which those governments share with each other some of the taxpayer’s information.  Even though you may not have heard of them, they have existed since the 1970s, but are becoming more common today as government tax agencies race to match the level of global… Read more »

More Forensic Accountants of the Future Needed

Posted by & filed under Accounting Principles, All Articles, Financial Accounting, Fraud Accounting, Intermediate Accounting.

In recent efforts, the AICPA is promoting forensic accounting skills to CPA firms and university professors. As part of this push, the Institute has published a new report entitled, “Characteristics and Skills of the Forensic Accountant, which presents qualities that surveyed attorneys, forensic CPAs and academics see as critical for the forensic accounting discipline, particularly… Read more »