Sarbanes-Oxley

Companies Rarely Get Back Bonuses from Ex-CEOs

Large companies almost never get back the bonuses they paid to CEOs who used questionable methods to earn them, a new survey says.The New York Times reported that 414 companies restated earnings in 2004 alone, but a review of the restatements shows that large corporations rarely get bonus money back from executives, even when the bonuses were based on numbers that were questionable, inflated or inaccurate.For example, William A.

CFOs Must Still File Internal-Control Certifications, Despite SOX Extension

The chief executive officers (CEOs) and chief financial officers (CFOs) of certain midsize and foreign public companies must still execute and file certifications about their internal controls under Section 302 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, even though the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) last week gave them an extra year to comply with Section 404, says one of the country's largest corporate governance consulting units.

SEC Approves PCAOB's $137 Million 2005 Budget

The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board's (PCAOB) 2005 budget grew from $103 million in 2004 to $137 million when the Securities and Exchange Commission unanimously approved the budget Thursday.The PCAOB, created by the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley Act to police and discipline public company accountants, is a private, nonprofit agency that relies mostly on public company fees for support.

SEC Grants One-Year Extension for SOX Compliance

The Commission has further extended the compliance dates for non-accelerated filers and foreign private issuers regarding amendments to its rules under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 that were adopted on June 5, 2003, pursuant to Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. The amendments require a company to include in its annual reports a report by management on the company's internal control over financial reporting and an accompanying auditor's report. The Commission extended the original Section 404 compliance dates for all issuers in February 2004 (see Release No. 33-8392).
Community News

Defense of WorldCom's Ebbers Begins with Whistleblower

Lawyers for former WorldCom Inc. Chief Executive Bernard Ebbers launched their defense Wednesday afternoon with testimony from the whistleblower credited with alerting WorldCom's board to the massive accounting fraud.Cynthia Cooper, the former head of internal auditing at WorldCom, testified that auditors at Arthur Andersen gave a "green light" rating to the company's accounting for 2000 and 2001, the Associated Press reported.

SEC Sets Date for Internal Controls Roundtable

On Feb. 7, 2005, the Commission announced that it would host a roundtable discussion and would solicit written feedback regarding the experiences of registrants, accounting firms and others in implementing the new internal control requirements under Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002. See Press Release 2005-13. Today the Commission announced that the roundtable will be held on Wednesday, April 13, 2005, in the William O.
Community News

GAO Report: Effective Internal Control is Key to Improving Accountability

Internal control is at the heart of accountability for our nation’s resources and how effectively government uses them.
Community News

PWC, Sun Microsystems Offer Identity Mgt. Solution to Help With SOX Compliance

PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP and Sun Microsystems, Inc. last week announced they will provide a joint solution to help companies leverage identity management to sustain Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, improve security and increase process efficiencies. Companies that use Sun's Java(TM) System Identity Management Suite also will gain access to PricewaterhouseCoopers' regulatory compliance and business risk management experience.
Technology

Fraud Prevention Tops Corporate Boards' To-Do Lists

FIRSTGlobal Investigations, a division of BDO Seidman LLP, predicts that fraud prevention will top priority lists for many corporate boards in the coming year.Boards had to focus on complying with the internal control requirements of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act last year, but putting training programs in place to prevent fraud should attract greater attention this year, the Sarbanes-Oxley Compliance Journal reported.

Verizon Chief Testifies About Buyout Offer of WorldCom

The chairman and chief executive of Verizon said in court Thursday that he repeatedly approached former WorldCom Chief Executive Bernard Ebbers in 2001 about buying the company.Advertisement
Community News

U.S. Public Companies Changing Audit Firms at Record Pace

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 did not require public companies to regularly change audit firms, but it seems many of them are doing so anyway.The Wall Street Journal reported on a study released Wednesday by proxy-advisory firm Glass Lewis & Co. that showed more than 1,600 public companies left their audit firm last year, which represents a 78 percent increase over 2003.Over the two-year period, 2,514 companies switched audit firms, which is nearly a quarter of all U.S.

Sarbanes Oxley Group Announces Professional SOX Certifications

In response to the industry's cry for certification standards for Sarbanes Oxley professionals and auditors, the Sarbanes Oxley Group recently announced the launch of its SOXBase- and SOXPro- level training and certification programs.
Tax

AICPA to Comment on PCAOB Proposal on Auditor Independence, Tax Services

The AICPA’s reaction was generally favorable to the rule proposed by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board concerning tax services that can be offered to public company audit clients, but the Institute will submit a comment letter. Four circumstances are identified in the proposal that would be considered as impairing an auditor’s independence.
Community News

Internal Control Compliance Cost Could Top $35 Billion

The high-tech trade group AeA has made several recommendations concerning internal controls requirements, with the group projecting compliance will cost companies $35 billion this year, Dow Jones Newswires reported.The $35 billion pricetag is signifcantly higher than expected, with the Securities and Exchange Commission anticipating in 2003 that costs would average around $1.24 billion per year, with higher costs in initial years.The SEC has already acted to suspend compliance for small- and medium-sized companies because of the higher costs."Smaller companies neither require, nor can

SEC Announces Roundtable on Internal Control Reporting Requirements

The Securities and Exchange Commission announced today that it will host a roundtable discussion this spring regarding registrants’ and accounting firms’ experiences implementing the new reporting requirements under Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002. The roundtable, which will include representatives of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), issuers, auditors, investors and other interested parties, is tentatively scheduled for April 2005.
Community News

PwC Takes Responsibility for Auditor Independence Violations

PricewaterhouseCoopers is publicly stating that it violated certain auditor independence rules. The announcement comes on the tails of the issuance of quarterly reports by multi-billion dollar engineering firm Parker Hannifin Corp. The report issued by Parker Hannifin last week disclosed irregularities in cash-handling services performed by a PwC affiliate in China.The next day, PwC spokesman David Nestor announced that the issue had come to light in an internal review at the Big Four firm, and that a number of other clients besides Parker Hannifin are affected.
Community News

404 Institute Webcast to Feature Moody's Perspective on Corporate Governance

The 404 Institute's February 2 Webcast -- "Analyzing Corporate Governance from a Creditor's Perspective" -- will focus on the rating agency's perspective on corporate governance.Featuring Kenneth Bertsch, senior vice president of corporate governance for Moody's Investors Service, the Webcast will address an array of key questions. They include: How do creditors view corporate governance? Are qualitative factors more or less important than quantitative factors? What issues are at the heart of corporate governance concerns?Mr.
Technology

Sun Microsystems, Inc. Announces Identity Auditor

Sun Microsystems, Inc. announced this week “Sun Java System Identity Auditor”, a comprehensive identity audit solution for helping to improve audit and compliance performance. Identity Auditor provides the most extensive feature set available today, can enable customers to create a secure identity audit trail and present a unified view of an individual's identity and system access activities. Sun is the only vendor to deliver proactive, automated, and sustainable visibility into identity controls across critical enterprise applications and the entire identity management infrastructure.
Community News

Former E&Y Audit Partner Jailed for SOX Violations

Back in October of 2004, Thomas Trauger pled guilty to falsifying records in a federal investigation in violation of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. He admitted as part of this plea that he knowingly altered, destroyed and falsified records with the intent to impede and obstruct an investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This is one of the first cases of document destruction brought under the recently enacted Sarbanes-Oxley Act. U.S. Attorney Kevin V.

PCAOB Standards, Related Rules Reference Guide Offered by AICPA

The PCAOB Professional Standards and Related Rules (including SEC-Approved Releases and PCAOB Staff Q&A Guidance) has been developed by the AICPA to supply auditors with a workable, current, and comprehensive source of PCAOB standards for their engagements. This compilation delivers – Professional standards and staff guidance – including standards on auditing, attest, quality control, ethics, and independence. PCAOB Auditing Standard Nos. 1, 2, and 3, and all of the conforming amendments related to PCAOB Auditing Standard No.

Pages