A&A news

A&A

Creative Accounting Raises Growth Eyebrows

Accounting procedures at an Indianapolis-based insurance giant has raised the eyebrows of analysts regarding how profits have been reported.When Conseco, Inc. reported its first quarter 2000 profits to the Securities and Exchange Commission, it used an investment the company made in December with a wireless communications company, Tritel, Inc., to boost profits within Insurance Division.
A&A

Cracking the Safe Open on Wireless Banking

These days, you can hardly turn around without a new innovation, invention or iteration ... so why should the concept of wireless banking be any different?At the COMDEX show, global business giant EDS has developed a way to conduct banking transactions using the Palm VII.
A&A

Laughing At Your Expense

Dilbert creator Scott Adams is behind a competition looking for the world's funniest expense claim story, and lunch with the celebrated cartoonist forms part of the prize.The "Laughing At Your Expense" contest wants to hear - in 150 words or less - the funniest or craziest expense report story, or the most hilarious item you have ever had to have approved on an expense report.A grand prize of a weekend for two in San Francisco, plus lunch with Adams, awaits the overall winner, with runners-up receiving an autographed Dilbert book and
A&A

Bottling Strategy Drain's Coke Finances

The real thing isn't very real these days, according to a new report in which Coca-Cola's continuously weak financial performance is attributed to a poor relationship with its bottlers. And now, the way in which Coke handled its stake in bottling has raised more than a few eyebrows when it comes to GAAP.Back in 1986 when Coke spun off its slight majority interest in bottling operations to Coca-Cola Enterprises, Inc. (CCE), it retained seats on CCE's board.
A&A

SEC Announces Revenue Recognition Policies and Rules

Article by Charles Hecht of Hecht & Stechman.Reprinted with permission from The Financial Management Network.Citing a study which found that over half of financial reporting frauds involved the overstating of revenue, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently issued a Staff Accounting Bulletin (SAB) in its continuing efforts to combat earnings management.
A&A

Finance Gurus Ignite NonProfit World

Venture capital firms are a dime a dozen nowadays, and most start-ups and entrepreneurial pursuits can't get enough of the wave of new money.What about charity, nonprofits and philanthropy? Aren't organizations who hold 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(6) filing status just as viable to be funded by investors?Yes, according to Flatiron Partners, a New York City-based venture capital firm that has just announced two new projects in its huge portfolio.
Practice

Developing a Strong Cash Management Procedures Manual

Article by Leslie N. Masonson, CCMReprinted with permission from The Financial Management Network.Many companies do not have a detailed, up-to-date and well-written cash management procedures manual. Only an estimated 60% of large companies have this manual, while 20% of smaller companies have one. This oversight can prove costly in case of a fraud, disaster, or other difficult situations.The process of creating a cash management procedures manual is time-consuming, people intensive, and difficult to keep current.
A&A

'Commingled Pools' vs. 'Mutual' Funds

Many financial planners, and those helping administer retirement plans for clients and companies, may want to take a refresher course on the differences between 'commingled pools' and 'mutual' funds.Mutual funds, of course, are very popular staples of 401(k) plans and other savings instruments, and although these funds and commingled pools are both run by investment managers, funds that are 'commingled' are not open to individual investors are not regulated by the Securites and Exchange Commission.Most commingled pools are run by banks and trusts, and do
A&A

CPA Software Giants Join XBRL Effort

A number of prominent accounting software companies have signed on with Big 5 firms, the AICPA and international organizations to step up the push for XBRL.XBRL is short for Extensible Business Reporting Language, and is the brainchild of a consortium seeking to establish an international language to report financial information over the Internet.A few of the software companies participating in the effort include Navision, Best and Sage.
Practice

Great News!

This is the third in a series of editorials by Results Accountants' Systems.This has been my week for great news (more about that soon).It’s also been my week for a quarterly check-up at the doctors. And as I was sitting there in the waiting room (why can’t doctors see you on time?). I thought about being a doctor and the parallels between being a doctor and being an Accountant in Public Practice.There are two that I thought of. First, a sign I saw in a medical practice several years ago.
A&A

Financial Capital Standards a Hot Issue

The Association for Financial Professionals has put its support behind an effort to promote a tighter set of capital standards to promote stability throughout the financial services marketplace.Because many AFP members are involved with foreign and U.S.
Technology

Fax Etiquette 101

If you receive a fax in your office intended for another company, are you obligated to forward it or contact the sender to report a mishap?The answer is no, according to Deborah Sauer, a vice president of marketing at Stamford, Conn.-based Pitney Bowes Inc.There are over 110 million fax machines in use worldwide, and mix-ups will occur. As a good corporate citizen, you can contact the sender and inform them that their fax was misdirected.
Technology

CFO Seeks Thrills the Dotcom Way

Heidi Miller is no stranger to risk.
A&A

Boosting Profits the 'Friendly' Way

Sometimes, the only way to advise an employer on how to increase the bottom line is to roll up your sleeves, take a deep breath and put a 'closed' sign on some of your most popular ventures.Something like this certainly does not happen overnight; internal auditors, controllers and other financial personnel work for months, and sometimes years, in helping make a cost-cutting decision.Take, for example, Friendly Ice Cream Corp. and their chain of more than 600 Friendly's Restaurants.
A&A

Inc.'s Top 10 Web Sites For Small Business

The April 2000 issue of Inc. magazine features a very informative article where CEOs were asked to "test drive" and rate the best reference web sites for small business.General conclusion: all the sites had something of value, but none of them were at a level that sophisticated CEO's needed to help them run and manage their business.The good news is that many of the sites offered their own unique "golden nugget" - an application that really added value to the experience.
A&A

SYNERGY Serves CPA/ Financial Services Arena

The latest player in assisting the CPA delivering financial services is SYNERGY. SYNERGY is a membership group of CPA firms who, at the national level, will offer support, guidance and education to the CPA delivering services in local areas.SYNERGY is based in White Plains, NY, and headed by Walter Primoff, former deputy executive director of the New York State Society of CPAs. In its initial implementation phase, SYNERGY will serve firms through its Web site, publications and in educational programs.
A&A

SEC Fights for Fund Disclosure

Investors looking to learn about the impact of taxes on their funds' performance may soon find their fund companies doing this for them. The Securities and Exchange Commission has proposed that fund companies take this role because investors are entitled to be told the after-tax consequences of funds.Taxes affect funds differently. Two funds with identical before-tax returns can have two very different tax liabilities. Fund investment strategies can really make a difference at tax time.
A&A

Tax Bill Yields Results

In addition to a rise in minimum wage, the recently passed tax bill is generally positive for small business owners, according to analysts and experts who are examining the legislation.A gradual reduction in the estate tax is viewed as a boon for small business owners, although Democrats disagree with the logic.
A&A

Further Defining 'Value Added'

Sylvia Pate of QuickSilver Consulting gave an encore performance this week to her initial workshop session on Value Added services. This week's session focused on the incremental efforts that add value.
A&A

Local CPAs Compete With Larger, Online Preparers

It's finally happened: a group of CPAs think they build a better mousetrap--or online tax preparation service--than the big guys like H&R Block, Intuit and H.D. Vest.The company is based in Encino, CA, and is called Taxes4Less.com. It is run by Russell Gotlich and Gregory Yulish, both formerly with Arthur Andersen.One of the main differences between their company and the larger ones is the ability to personally attend to tax returns and complete the electronic transaction.

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