2010 FEI CFRI Conference: A New York State of Mind

I’m spending a few days in New York, covering the 2010 Financial Executives International (FEI) Current Financial Reporting Issues (CFRI) Conference. It’s two days at the Marriott Marquis chock full of FASBs, GAAP, SEC and CFO -types, and a chance to see some of the others who have covered the conference with me these past few years.

One person I won’t see is Susan Webster of BNA. Edith Orenstein has written a very nice remembrance of our friend and mentor over at the FEI blog. Susan was one of the first veteran journalist to recognize what I was trying to do and to help me immensely in those first couple of years to accomplish it.  She is missed.

There’s quite a bit to see and hear here:

Opening keynote this morning is by Zanny Minton-Beddoes, the Economics Editor for The Economist.  I like The Economist’s world view and global perspective. I’m looking forward to hearing her thoughts on what comes next, especially with regard to sovereign default – Ireland has been in the news all weekend – and the global economic recovery.

I’m going to try to focus more this year on the technical updates, in particular with regard to financial instruments and fair value and revenue recognition. It seems much of what I have to write about – litigation against the audit firms – stems from scandals and manipulation in these two areas.

There’s a great Accounting and Financial Reporting Hot Issues Update that puts a representative from all four of my beloved Big 4 on the panel. That segment alone is worth the price of the ticket.

Tuesday’s agenda includes a presentation on Deal Pitfalls and Effective Due Diligence. It’s my chance to listen to some super smart lawyers talk about growing your business the old fashioned way – buying it.

The SEC Update is always interesting. I’ll have a chance to congratulate Jim Kroeker on getting a full time job. It was at this conference that I met him for the first time. We were sitting in the speaker/press room late one afternoon and, as a former Deloitte partner,  he was a little nervous to be stuck alone with me.

Make sure you keep your eyes open for coverage from Edith Orenstein over at the FEI blog, from Matt Kelly at Compliance Week who previewed me on his coverage last night, and from BNA’s Steve Burkholder. The hashtag for the Twitter stream is #CFRI2010.

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