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AICPA

23 June 2014

Comment Letter - AICPA’s proposed statement on standards for attestation engagements
In our comment letter on the Proposed Statement on Standards for Attestation Engagements, Subject-Matter Specific Attestation Standards: Clarification and Recodification, we supported clarifying the standards in accordance with the clarity drafting conventions used in the proposed general attestation standard.

16 June 2014

Breach of an independence interpretation
The AICPA’s Professional Ethics Executive Committee (PEEC) is restructuring the Institute’s ethics standards to improve the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct (Code) so that members and others can apply the rules and reach correct conclusions more easily and intuitively. The PEEC is exposing for comment proposed standards revisions which provide guidance to members in public practice concerning a breach of an independence interpretation. Comments are due 16 September 2014.

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CAQ

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.

25 June 2014

Highlights - CAQ SEC Regulations Committee - 25 June 2014
At this meeting, the SEC staff discussed, among other things, its disclosure effectiveness initiative, clarified that a thoughtful attempt to improve the effectiveness of disclosures will not trigger a review or result in any additional comments from the staff, its decision to not object to a real estate investment trust’s presentation of gains or losses on the sale of properties that do not qualify as discontinued operations under either S-X Rule 3-15 or US GAAP, and its view that when registrants update the age of financial statements in a Form 10 in compliance with S-X Rule 3-12, they are required to file an amendment to the Form 10 before it becomes effective, rather than file an Exchange Act periodic report.

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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

13 June 2014

EITF Update - June 2014
The EITF reached final consensuses on measuring the financial assets and financial liabilities of a consolidated financing entity and reclassification of certain government insured residential mortgage loans upon foreclosure by a creditor. The EITF also discussed but didn’t reach a final conclusion on how to determine whether the host contract in a hybrid financial instrument issued in the form of a share is more akin to debt or to equity.

14 April 2014

March 2014 EITF meeting minutes
The EITF reached a final consensus on accounting for share-based payments when the terms of an award provide that a performance target could be achieved after the requisite service period. The EITF reached a consensus-for-exposure on the recognition of new accounting basis (pushdown) in certain circumstances.

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FASB

21 August 2014

In Focus - Proposed 2015 GAAP Financial Reporting Taxonomy, ASU taxonomy changes, taxonomy implementation guides, taxonomy simplification
The FASB announced an upcoming webcast that discusses the proposed changes to the 2015 GAAP Financial Reporting Taxonomy Release anticipated to be available for public review and comment by 29 August, including changes to the Taxonomy for Accounting Standards Updates. There also will be expanded coverage of the FASB’s growing series of Taxonomy Implementation Guides and reporting on preliminary findings from the Taxonomy Simplification Initiative. In addition, SEC staff will discuss current XBRL filing issues.

20 August 2014

20 August 2014 FASB meeting
The Board continued discussing the impairment of investments in equity securities not measured at fair value with changes in fair value recognized in net income on a recurring basis and disclosures about hybrid instruments containing bifurcated embedded derivatives. The Board also discussed different ways of promoting the appropriate use of discretion by reporting entities in applying annual disclosure requirements for defined benefit plans in employers’ financial statements.

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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

19 August 2014

PCAOB issues staff consultation paper seeking comment on auditing accounting estimates and fair value measurements
The PCAOB issued for public comment a Staff Consultation Paper on standard-setting activities related to auditing accounting estimates and fair value measurements. The paper was prepared by the Office of the Chief Auditor as part of its outreach efforts to seek input related to the potential need for changes to the PCAOB standards in this important area and a possible approach for a new auditing standard.

18 August 2014

Third progress report on PCAOB inspections of broker and dealer
In its third progress report on the interim inspection program for auditors of broker-dealers registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the PCAOB identified audit deficiencies or independence findings in 56 of the 60 audit firms inspected, and in 71 of the 90 audits inspected. Audit deficiencies were found in portions of 70 of the 90 audits. Independence findings were found in 21 on the 90 audits, where firms helped with the bookkeeping or preparation of the financial statements they audited, contrary to SEC rules.

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SEC

21 July 2014

Mark J. Flannery named SEC chief economist and director of economic and risk analysis division
The SEC announced it has named Mark J. Flannery as its chief economist and director of its Division of Economic and Risk Analysis (DERA), which provides interdisciplinary analysis to help inform the Commission’s policymaking, rulemaking, enforcement, and examinations. Dr. Flannery, currently a finance professor at the University of Florida’s Warrington School of Business Administration, will begin his new post in September.

3 July 2014

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

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