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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 Extant AT section 501 is expected to be withdrawn when the proposed SAS is issued as a final standard.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

16 October 2014

Representatives of the FASB and the ASB of Japan hold biannual meeting
Representatives of the FASB and the ASBJ met on 14-15 October in Tokyo, Japan. This meeting was the seventeenth in a series of biannual meetings between the FASB and the ASBJ to further their cooperative efforts to develop high-quality global accounting standards. At this meeting, the FASB and the ASBJ both provided updates on their respective activities, and discussed technical topics in which the both boards are interested, such as the conceptual framework, disclosure framework, business combinations, and leases. The FASB and the ASBJ agreed that they would continue to exchange views towards the development of accounting standards that contribute to the soundness of global capital markets. The next meeting is planned in the first half of 2015 in Norwalk.

14 October 2014

Practical expedient for the measurement date of an employer’s defined benefit obligation and plan assets
The Board is issuing this proposed Update as part of its initiative to reduce complexity in accounting standards. The amendments in this proposed Update would provide a practical expedient for employers with fiscal year-ends that do not fall on a month-end by permitting those employers to measure defined benefit plan assets and obligations as of the month-end that is closest to the entity’s fiscal year-end and to follow that measurement date methodology consistently from year to year. The proposed amendments would require that an entity disclose the accounting policy election and the alternative date used for measuring defined benefit plan assets and obligations. Comments are due 15 December 2014.

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GASB

7 October 2014

The GASB Report - October 2014
The GASB held public meetings 20-22 August and 8 September 2014 to discuss issues associated with its projects on leases, fiduciary responsibilities, tax abatement disclosures, and irrevocable charitable trusts. The Board also reviewed and approved the Technical Plan for the final third of 2014.

18 August 2014

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

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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

16 October 2014

SEC’s FY 2014 enforcement actions span securities industry and include first-ever cases
The SEC announced that in fiscal year 2014, new investigative approaches and the innovative use of data and analytical tools contributed to a very strong year for enforcement marked by cases that spanned the securities industry. The agency’s enforcement actions also included a number of first-ever cases, including actions involving the market access rule, the “pay-to-play” rule for investment advisers, an emergency action to halt a municipal bond offering, and an action for whistleblower retaliation.

9 October 2014

SEC in Focus - October 2014
Our SEC in Focus provides an update on activities and events relating to SEC matters that occurred during the third quarter of 2014.

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