International

Tax

IRS seeks to pierce the veil of secrecy on foreign bank accounts

The days of anonymous Swiss bank accounts identified only by numbers and of stashes of cash in the Cayman Islands are dwindling. Not that there is anything inherently wrong with keeping the accounts, as long as the purpose isn't to evade U.S. income tax. The IRS reports that since the year 2000, the number of individuals reporting their foreign income on Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts Forms (FBAR) has jumped by almost 85 percent. Even so, the tax authorities still believe that reporting compliance problems are rampant.
Practice Management

Checklist for international telecommuting

A preeminent professor of international employment law, Belgium's Roger Blanpain, recently said that, "We live in an information society, driven by knowledge in action.... [Services] can be provided via the information highways from anywhere, even from the other side of the globe.... We are in a New World.
Tax

UBS is pressured to turn over Swiss tax shelter client names

Last week, the Securities and Exchange Commission filed an enforcement action against global financial services firm UBS AG, charging the firm with acting as an unregistered broker-dealer and investment adviser.The SEC's complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, alleged that UBS's conduct facilitated the ability of certain U.S. clients to maintain undisclosed accounts in Switzerland and other foreign countries, which enabled those clients to avoid paying taxes related to the assets in those accounts.

AICPA to participate in forum hosted by Prince Charles

The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants has announced that it has agreed to participate in a forum hosted by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales on "Accounting for Sustainability: Decision-Making and Reporting in a Resource-Constrained World." The forum will be held December 17th in London at the Royal Family residence at St.
AccountingWEB Life

Liechtenstein agrees to share information with IRS

On Monday, December 8, the Internal Revenue Service signed an agreement with the government of Liechtenstein whereby Liechtenstein will exchange information pursuant to IRS audits. At the same time, the current legal challenges against UBS, HSBC, and Credit Suisse for aiding tax fraud have placed U.S. owners of undisclosed "secret" foreign bank accounts at serious risk of IRS prosecution. This is especially true for U.S. owners of Swiss accounts.
A&A

Global advisory group to review reporting issues related to credit crisis

The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) have announced that they will create a global advisory group comprising regulators, preparers, auditors, investors, and other users of financial statements. The advisory group will help to ensure that reporting issues arising from the global economic crisis are considered in an internationally co-ordinated manner.
A&A

FASB and IASB work together on reporting issues in financial crisis

The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) have announced further details on their joint approach to dealing with reporting issues arising from the global financial crisis. The boards reiterated the importance of working cooperatively and in an internationally coordinated manner to consider accounting issues emerging from the global crisis.

Bullying in the workplace is an international issue

If you thought you left bullying behind along with jump ropes and gym uniforms, think again. The Workplace Bullying Institute, yes there is such a thing, reported last year that 37 percent of the U.S workforce or 54 million employees are being bullied now or have been bullied at the workplace at some point during their careers.
A&A

Do you have the right number of employees?

By Bruce L. Katcher, Ph.D.Part 1 - THE PROBLEM:Organizations continue to downsize, yet our research shows that 6 out of 10 employees say there are not enough qualified employees to do the work in their department. Are they right, or are they lobbying to prevent layoffs? Here are some reasons why they may, indeed, be right:

IFRS in the USA: Be Prepared!

By Darla Sycamore"Be Prepared" is the motto of the Scout movement and goes back to before the First World War. To be prepared means "you have to be prepared at any moment to face difficulties and even dangers by knowing what to do and how to do it."So how can you be prepared for the coming of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) to America? The smart money is on the eventual adoption of IFRS at some time in the USA.
Technology

Companies around the world join forces to repair massive Internet flaw

Imagine sitting at your desk and logging onto your bank's Web site to check your accounts. Everything looks normal - but after three failed attempts to log in you are told that you must contact your bank. Just minutes later your bank accounts have been emptied. This scenario might have been the work of science fiction until last week's announcement of a major design flaw in the Domain Name System (DNS) that runs the Internet.
Technology

SEC Chairman Cox will speak at XBRL conference

XBRL International and XBRL US have jointly announced "The Ultimate Client: Business Reporting for Investors, Government and Citizens," a global conference that will explore how improved business and financial reporting through interactive data will affect investor communications, governance, risk and compliance, as well as government reporting.

Survey finds companies underutilizing globalization strategies

According to the third annual RSM McGladrey Manufacturing and Wholesale Distribution National Survey (MWD) released last week, companies reporting their business conditions as "thriving and growing" declined by nearly 10 percent in the past year.
Tax

John Doe summons means Swiss banks may have lost their mystique

On July 8th, the IRS met with several major accounting firms that have foreign offices - a group which is thought to include Ernst & Young, PricewaterhouseCoopers, KPMG, Deloitte, BDO Seidman and Grant Thornton - to solicit their help with the Qualified Intermediary program. That program began in 2000 and is designed to help the IRS track funds that may be secreted in foreign accounts. Just days ago, a U.S. District Court Judge Joan A.
Education & Careers

Students savor Chinese business experience

Business graduate students have returned from China after biting into one of the world's fastest-growing economies.The program, presented by the Kansas University School of Business, offered students a firsthand experience of business operation and strategy in China. Eleven students traveled to Beijing, Xi'an, and Shanghai to learn how different cultures and political and economical systems affected Chinese business.

U.S. behind other nations on international office romance survey

If you are interested in dating co-workers, then a new survey from CareerBuilder.co.uk reveals that Greece, the Netherlands, and Spain may be the best places for you to work. Out of the countries surveyed, Greek workers (66 per cent) are the most likely to have engaged in an office romance, followed by workers in the Netherlands (51 per cent), Spain (46 per cent), the UK (40 per cent), Sweden (40 per cent) and the U.S. (40 per cent). Workers in Germany (28 per cent) are the least likely to have dated a co-worker.

Canadian companies not ready for conversion to IFRS

The vast majority of Canadian companies that will be required to convert from Canada's generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) to international financial reporting standards (IFRS) in January 2011 are not prepared to make the change, according to a study sponsored by Canadian Financial Executives Institute (FEI Canada) and Ernst & Young LLP and released at a conference sponsored by the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants and the International Accounting Standards Board in Toronto on April 23 – 25.

Shortage of skilled workers remains largest constraint on U.S. private business’ ability to expand

The availability of a skilled workforce is the biggest constraint on business growth for private businesses in the United States, according to the Grant Thornton International Business Report (IBR). While it is the largest U.S. constraint overall, only a quarter (26 percent) of U.S. private businesses rank it as a major issue, a decrease from 34 percent for the same category in 2007 and notably less than the current global average of 37 percent. A minimal percentage of U.S.
Education & Careers

Financial literacy program launches at Hilbert College

Building good financial habits and steps to avoid piling up debt will be the focus of a new financial literacy program expected to kick off this fall for Hamburg, NY-based Hilbert College students. The program will be funded by a three-year $750 AIG Credit Counseling Challenge Grant awarded to the Hilbert Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) organization. Hilbert is among 120 SIFE teams across the country selected to receive the grant to run education sessions on credit issues.

Many middle market companies have global expansion plans

Overseas markets are proving fruitful for middle market companies and, facing a declining U.S. economy, many are intending to expand globally, according to a survey by KPMG LLP, the U.S. audit, tax and advisory firm.

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