SEC Administrative Judge Cameron Elliot issued a blistering decision last week in a long-running dispute over regulator access to auditor work papers in fraud investigations. The judge banned the Chinese Big Four firms from auditing US issuers for six months and lambasted them for voluntarily putting their firms “between a rock and a hard place.” The decision is not yet final but the enormous impact is already being felt worldwide.
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.
BLBG publishes the Advocate for Institutional Investors, a quarterly newsletter which contains reporting and analysis of the latest securities and corporate law issues. The Advocate often features articles by the management and general counsel of some of the largest public pension funds in the country, as well as some of the nation’s premier securities litigators. This Spring the magazine also features my writing on the subject of private litigation against audit firms.
I’m in San Diego at the Accounting Program Leaders Group/Federation of Schools of Accountancy annual seminar. I spoke Sunday on the profession and its professionals.
Ernst & Young gets a little bit of good news about Lehman liabilities but… Is it just me or are the auditor defense lawyers losing their touch?
The SEC is busy chasing Ponzi schemers and foreign bribers. But bogus accounting remains a bigger danger to the markets. (More links.)
Chapter 21 of Sheila Bair’s book, “Bull By The Horns,” is a blow-by-blow account of the wrangling and dealmaking that resulted in two settlements that satisfy neither consumer advocates nor the borrowers that were harmed by abusive mortgage servicer activities.
Did the government make a profit on its sale of AIG shares last week? Is that even the right question to ask? The former Special Inspector General of TARP Neil Barofsky and I think it’s not.
The day my OpEd in the Financial Times was published, July 30, there were many other stories in other publications marking the occasion of Sarbanes-Oxley’s tenth anniversary. Most of them focused on the lack of prosecutions of CEOs and CFOs for false financial statement certification crimes.
What I wrote this week about the MF Global trustee’s “investigation report”, JP Morgan’s Jamie Dimon and his testimony on the “whale” trade for the US Senate, and the lure of London. Those topics and so much more…
I’m a panelist July 12 for, “Auditors, the Board and Shareholders: An Evolving Relationship,” at the Society of Corporate Secretaries and Governance Professionals Annual Meeting in Washington DC.
My column today at American Banker is about the PCAOB’s auditor rotation and auditor independence concept release and its impact on banks. My favorite lines are…