Friday Footnotes: A Very Guilty Accountant; Beware Audit Independence; Grant Thornton Does a Thing | 10.29.21

Wealthy retired accountant is found guilty of murder [Daily Mail] The pregnant daughter of a wealthy retired accountant who was today jailed for life after stabbing her husband to death has told the court of her heartbreak, saying: ‘I lost my dad but I’ve also lost my mum.’ Isabelle Potterton said on Friday that her mother Penelope Jackson – who murdered her retired colonel husband David, 78, on her 66th birthday and calmly told police ‘I should have stabbed him more’ as he lay dying – is ‘not the person I knew’.

SEC Acting Chief Accountant urges scrutiny of auditor independence in current environment [JD Supra] This week, Acting Chief Accountant Paul Munter issued a statement regarding the importance of auditor independence—a concept that is “foundational to the credibility of the financial statements.” The responsibility to monitor independence is a shared one: “[w]hile sourcing a high quality independent auditor is a key responsibility of the audit committee, compliance with auditor independence rules is a shared responsibility of the issuer, its audit committee, and the auditor.”

New Deloitte report explains how tech companies have to change to be more ethical [TechRepublic] The report released on Wednesday, “Beyond good intentions: Navigating the ethical dilemmas facing the technology industry” spells out the contradictory forces at work. In a survey of tech professionals, 82% strongly agreed that their company was ethical. In the same survey, only 24% strongly agreed that the tech industry takes an ethical approach to the products and services that it creates.

EY report: Fortune 100 companies boost audit transparency, including on ESG [Compliance Week] “Our examination of proxy disclosure data for 2021 demonstrates that companies continue to provide voluntary disclosures in audit-related areas of interest to investors and other stakeholders, typically going beyond the specific areas of required disclosures,” EY stated. In addition to providing required disclosures about the functions, policies, and procedures of audit committees, many companies are also shedding new light on “the type and degree of oversight exercised by audit committees.”

PwC upskills business workforce to leverage automation opportunities [SiliconANGLE] PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP has developed a new software product, called ProEdge, which focus on identifying the skills needed for the future, teaching those talents, and helping to scale the usage of the skills across the organization, according to Kevin Kroen, partner, PwC Advisory, intelligent automation and digital upskilling leader at PwC.

Grant Thornton commits to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 [Business Wire] Grant Thornton plans to achieve its net zero goal by reducing business travel, better using its office space and increasing energy efficiency across its operations. The firm may also use carbon credits and other investments in the future to account for any residual carbon emissions.

FASB addresses contract assets, liabilities acquired in a business combination [Journal of Accountancy] Acquiring entities are required to measure contract assets and liabilities acquired in a business combination in accordance with FASB’s Topic 606 revenue recognition guidance, according to a new FASB standard issued Thursday. To eliminate diversity in practice, FASB issued Accounting Standards Update No. 2021-08, Business Combinations (Topic 805): Accounting for Contract Assets and Contract Liabilities From Contracts With Customers.

Hunting for Money, Democrats Rush to Rewrite Tax Code [New York Times] Lawmakers are racing to finalize legislation to pay for new spending initiatives. The process usually takes months, but they are trying to do it in days.

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