AccountingWEB Weekly News Wrap-Up - Issue 127
1. September 11: The Accounting Profession Responds
2. Andersen and Enron Take Center Stage
3. IRS Issues Tax Rebates to Nearly All Taxpayers
4. AICPA Members Vote on Global Business Credential
5. Tax Act Offers Something for Everyone
6. CPA Firms Get Feet Wet with New York Legal Practices
7. KPMG Consulting and Accenture Go Public
8. Accounting Professionals Face Massive Layoffs
9. Mellon Bank Points Out IRS Security Weaknesses
10.Computer Breaches Wreak Havoc
The votes have been counted and the proposal to implement a Global Business Credential has been soundly defeated by a vote of 63% opposed to 37% in favor. Find out more about the results of this landmark vote.
In this Special Edition of our Weekly News Wrap-Up, AccountingWEB has gathered the Top 10 stories that affected the accounting profession in 2001. Most of the stories will have significant impact on the profession in 2002, so knowing what's happening is crucial to your understanding of where the profession is going.
We welcome your thoughts and comments on these top stories for the year, and look forward to a new year sure to be filled with unknown challenges and opportunities for the profession.
Michael Platt 
The IRS responded to the tragic events of September 11 with tax savings and extended due dates. Many accounting organizations responded as well, with offers of free tax and planning assistance. "America Begins to Heal" is AccountingWEB's resource page for news of the accounting-related responses to the tragedy, including eyewitness accounts of events in New York City.
Big Five firm Andersen is in the spotlight, facing legal action after energy giant Enron announced bankruptcy plans, and errors in the company's financial statements were made public. 2002 is sure to bring monumental changes.
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Some saw it as a windfall, to others it was pocket change, and to others, the tax rebate of 2001 never even materialized. For a few months, however, citizens actually looked forward to receiving an envelope from the IRS in their mailboxes.
The AICPA's proposed global business credential captured the attention of the accounting press for nearly two years. AccountingWEB's news stories, the AICPA's live workshop presentation, reader comments, and links to information about the credential are all summarized at our Global Credential Resource Center.
Congress passed extensive tax legislation in 2001. From tax rebates, to lower tax brackets, to changes in the marriage penalty, expanded child tax credit, changes to IRA contribution limits, and tax credits for retirement contributions, the legislation offered something for everyone.
CPA practices have combined with legal practices in other countries for years, but the two have been prevented from working hand in hand in the United States. The New York State Bar recently ruled that American law firms and accounting firms are allowed to have a "side-by-side" alliance, which is opening the door for major changes in both professions.
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Several accounting firms divested themselves of their consultancy divisions during 2001. KMPG Consulting and Accenture, formerly known as Andersen Consulting, floated initial public offerings and have maintained a comfortable position on Wall Street.
2001 was not a great year for job security, particularly in the accounting and consultancy professions. Many firms found the need to cut their workforces or offer innovative temporary layoff programs.
Mellon Bank employees failed in their responsibility to process tax returns and deposit tax payments. As a result, the IRS is reexamining security measures and moving the Pittsburgh mail processing facility.
10. Computer Breaches Wreak Havoc 
As long as there is an Internet, there will be people who can't resist the temptation to tinker with the service and create electronic mayhem. Protecting your computer with the latest in security measures is a requirement for doing business in the new millennium.