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AICPA

18 September 2014

Reporting on an examination of controls at a service organization relevant to user entities’ internal control over financial reporting: clarification and recodification
The ASB has issued a third exposure draft resulting from the Attest Clarity Project. Among other things the proposed SSAE revises extant AT section 801, Reporting on Controls at a Service Organization (AICPA, Professional Standards), to conform it with chapters 1-4 of an updated version of the Proposed SSAE Attestation Standards: Clarification and Recodification, and address certain issues encountered in practice. Comments are due 18 December 2014.

10 September 2014

An audit of internal control over financial reporting that is integrated with an audit of financial statements
The ASB concluded that, because engagements performed under extant AT section 501, as well as related attestation interpretation No. 1, are required to be integrated with an audit of financial statements, it would be appropriate to move the content of extant AT section 501 from the attestation standards into GAAS. Extant AT section 501 is expected to be withdrawn when the proposed SAS is issued as a final standard. The ASB will consider developing an attestation standard addressing examinations of internal control other than internal control over financial reporting that is integrated with an audit of financial statements at a later date. Comments are due 10 December 2014.

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CAQ

27 August 2014

Professional judgment resource
The CAQ issued the Professional Judgment Resource, designed to provide auditors with an example of a decision-making process to facilitate important auditing and accounting judgments in a professionally skeptical manner.

23 July 2014

Financial restatement trends in the United States: 2003-2012
Analysis of the trends in and characteristics of restatements of public company financial statements provides useful information for all stakeholders in the capital markets. Preparers, auditors, and investors benefit from information on the types of restatements, the accounting issues that resulted in the need for a restatement, and the severity of those issues. This study, authored by Professor Susan Scholz of the University of Kansas, focuses on the decade following the implementation of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002. It examines developments in the number and seriousness of restatements over this period and chronicles key policy changes that may have had an impact on restatements.

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COSO

17 January 2013

Comment letter - COSO’s revised internal control framework and compendium of approaches and examples
We support COSO’s efforts to update its 1992 Internal Control – Integrated Framework to reflect changes in the business and operating environment and believe the Compendium will provide users with helpful guidance. In our comment letter, we expressed our support for COSO’s efforts to update and enhance the framework to enable users to better develop, implement and monitor systems of internal control. We also expressed certain concerns and suggested modifications to the revised framework and compendium, including, among others, enhancing the guidance related to an organization’s assessment of the effectiveness of its internal controls; modifying its definitions of deficiencies and major deficiencies; providing guidance about the precision of management review controls; and providing additional guidance on the application of the Revised Framework to smaller organizations.

18 September 2012

Internal control over external financial reporting and internal control-integrated framework
COSO released for public comment its Exposure Draft on Internal Control over External Financial Reporting. COSO seeks comment on this draft, and on two related documents: (1) the revised Internal Control - Integrated Framework (pdf, 1.7mb) and (2) the proposed Illustrative Tools for Assessing Effectiveness of a System of Internal Control (pdf, 1.1mb) , by November 20.

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EITF

19 September 2014

EITF Update - September 2014
The EITF reached final consensuses on pushdown accounting and determining whether the host contract in a hybrid financial instrument issued in the form of a share is more akin to debt or to equity. The EITF also reached consensuses-for-exposure on effects on historical earnings per unit of master limited partnership dropdown transactions and fair value hierarchy levels for certain investments measured at net asset value.

4 September 2014

Issue 14-A: Effects on historical earnings per unit of master limited partnership dropdown transactions
This issue discusses how the historical earnings per unit (EPU) of a Master Limited Partnership (MLP) should be presented when a dropdown transaction occurs subsequent to formation of the MLP.

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FASB

30 September 2014

Comment Letter - FASB proposal to eliminate the concept of extraordinary items
In our comment letter, we supported the FASB's efforts to reduce the cost and complexity of financial reporting by eliminating the concept of extraordinary items. We believe the proposal would not affect the quality of information provided to financial statement users.

30 September 2014

Comment Letter - FASB proposal to simplify the measurement of inventory
In our comment letter, we said we do not support the FASB’s proposal to measure inventory at the lower of cost or net realizable value (LCNRV). For entities that use the last-in, first-out (LIFO) accounting method in declining price environments, we believe the Proposed Standard could increase the cost and complexity of preparing the financial statements and, in certain circumstances, reduce the usefulness of the information provided to users. We also said the continuing acceptability of the retail inventory method should be made more clear in a final standard.

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GASB

18 August 2014

The GASB Report - August 2014
The August 2014 newsletter about the work of the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB).

4 August 2014

GASB Outlook - August 2014
August 2014 electronic newsletter discussing key GASB projects and activities.

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PCAOB

30 September 2014

PCAOB updated standard-setting agenda
The PCAOB updated Standard-Setting Agenda outlines milestones on various standard-setting projects. The agenda is determined based on consideration of the results of the PCAOB's oversight of registered public accounting firms, monitoring of the environment, consultation with the Board's Standing Advisory Group, input from the Board's Investor Advisory Group, and discussion with SEC staff, among other factors.

29 September 2014

PCAOB Investor Advisory Group to meet 20 October
The PCAOB announced that it will hold a meeting of its Investor Advisory Group on Wednesday, 20 October 2014. Topics that the IAG will present to the Board include: the audit firm business model and incentives, how to improve audit quality and the relevancy of the audit, and the relationship and role of the auditor with the audit committee.

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SEC

1 October 2014

SEC, FINRA and the MSRB to hold compliance outreach program for municipal advisors
The Securities and Exchange Commission, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), and the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) today announced the opening of registration for the first Compliance Outreach Program for Municipal Advisors that will take place in Chicago on 3 November. Similar to the compliance outreach programs for broker-dealers and investment advisers, the municipal advisor program will provide municipal advisor professionals a forum for discussions with regulators about risk management, regulatory issues, and compliance practices.

8 September 2014

Treatment of certain communications involving security-based swaps that may be purchased only by eligible contract participant
The SEC proposed a rule, under the Securities Act of 1933, to provide that certain communications involving security-based swaps that may be purchased only by eligible contract participants will not be deemed for purposes of Section 5 of the Securities Act to constitute offers of such security-based swaps or any guarantees of such security-based swaps that are securities. Under the proposed rule, the publication or distribution of price quotes relating to security-based swaps that may be purchased only by persons who are eligible contract participants and are traded or processed on or through a facility that either is registered as a national securities exchange or as a security-based swap execution facility, or is exempt from registration as a security-based swap execution facility pursuant to a rule, regulation, or order of the Commission, would not be deemed to constitute an offer, an offer to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to buy or purchase such security-based swaps or any guarantees of such security-based swaps that are securities for purposes of Section 5 of the Securities Act.

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