On February 28 the US Justice Department fined Deloitte & Touche LLP $149.5 million for alleged fraud against the government related to its role as the independent outside auditor of Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp. Also: The damages phase of the FDIC v. PwC case regarding Colonial Bank is set to begin in Washington DC on March 20.
Jim Doty’s term as chairman of the PCAOB, the audit regulator, expired in October. All summer since I arrived in Washington D.C., leading up to that date and since, there’s been speculation about whether or not SEC Chairwoman Mary Jo White would reappoint him to the job.
Ryan Adams testified on behalf of PwC in an important court case. How can PwC be independent of Adam’s employer Marin Software, and Adams, the Financial Reporting Director at this newly public PwC-audited client company, if he’s testifying on PwC’s behalf in litigation that could impact PwC’s business model in California and, perhaps, nationally?
“If accounting errors were felonies in California, Fannie Mae would already be serving life under Three Strikes.” That’s what GoingConcern.com said. See what I told TheStreet.com about Fannie Mae’s latest multi-billion dollar “adjustments”.
Now that the Securities and Exchange Commission has crossed KPMG’s independence violations off its to-do list, the agency can move on to the rest of the ones I’ve already identified for them. How about PwC and its business relationships and myriad services provided to audit client Thomson Reuters?
Stories that get stuck in your teeth.
If we can’t trust journalists to sort out who’s telling the truth and who’s just selling us, who can we trust?
Last defendant standing. Not an enviable place for EY in the case, In re Lehman Brothers Securities and Erisa Litigation. Holding out until the end has now cost EY $99 million, more than Lehman officers and directors.
I have been named a finalist for UCLA’s Gerald Loeb Awards for my work in Forbes magazine last year. I’m a “professional who writes” but also a professional writer and a journalist. You’ve been warned.
The Wall Street Journal has been accepting sponsored content, in an exclusive contract with Deloitte, for a while for its CFO Journal, CIO Journal and now a new publication, Risk & Compliance Journal. You may not have noticed. It’s getting harder and harder to tell the difference between news and advertising.
You can’t throw a rock at a fraud or scandal nowadays without hitting three, sometimes all four, of the largest global audit firms providing one service or another. The Big Four global accounting firms make money whether clients survive and thrive or flail and fail.
I thought after all that had happened at JPMorgan Chase last year – for example, billions in losses from the “whale” trade, investigations into Libor and AML illegal acts, multiple lawsuits including by the New York Attorney General for foreclosure fraud – someone would take a close look at internal audit and, maybe, make some big changes. I was wrong.