2001: The Year in Review
Here are the topics that held our attention during 2001, and AccountingWEB links to the stories we provided:
1. September 11: The Accounting Profession Responds
The IRS responded to 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.
American Begins to Heal
Big Five firm Andersen in is the spotlight, facing legal action after energy giant Enron announced bankruptcy plans after errors in the company's financial statements were made public.
- Andersen Enron Fiasco Prompts Look at Peer Reviews
- Andersen Agrees to Expanded Peer Review
- PwC Sacks 1,100 at Enron as SEC Targets Andersen
- Big Five Vow to Improve Standards
- Enron: Andersen Hits Back after $1B Lawsuit Threat
- POB to Oversee Deloitte Peer Review of Andersen
- Enron, Andersen Testify Before Congress
- Andersen CEO Takes Aim at Enron
- SEC's Pitt to Auditors: "You Will Pay"
- SEC to Examine Fortune 500 Annual Reports
- UC Hopes to Lead Class Action Suit Against Andersen, Enron
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 government in their mailboxes.
- Check Your Mail! Uncle Sam is Sending Rebates!
- Tax Rebate is Yours, Even If You Didn't Earn It
- Some States Will Take the Fun Out of Tax Rebates
- Official Word From the IRS on Tax Rebates
- 16 (and More) Smart Things to Do With Your Tax Rebate
- IRS Orders States: No Tax on Rebates
- Don't Spend Your Extra Income All in One Place
- Don't Fall for IRS Rebate Scam
- Wal-Mart Says, "Bring Us Your Tax Rebates!"
- IRS's Tax Rebate Boondoggle
- Tax Rebate Scam Comes Up Short
- States Will Change Tax Laws
- Wal-Mart Customers Spending Rebate Checks
- Tax Rebate Con-Men May Become Cons
- Phase One of Tax Rebate Program Comes to an End
- Rebate Checks Languishing at IRS
4. AICPA Members Vote on Global Business Credential
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 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.
- Tax Cut Brings Bad News for Some
- How Much Will the New Tax Laws Save You?
- Highlights of the New Tax Legislation
- Employers - New Withholding Tables Available for 2001
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.
- Multidisciplinary Practices Get Go-Ahead
- What's MDP? And . . . What's in it for Me?
- Ernst & Young Goes Forward with Law Practice
- Big Five CPA Firm Breaks Into Top 10 Law Firm Rankings
- KPMG Makes Advances in U.S. Legal Arena
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.
- KPMG to Delay Consultancy IPO
- KPMG Consulting Cuts Number of Shares
- KPMG Consulting Moves Forward with IPO Plans
- KPMG Raises Price, Cuts Shares for IPO
- KPMG IPO Scheduled for Week of February 5
- Accenture Considering IPO
- Shake-Up at Accenture as IPO Plans Move Forward
- Accenture Partners Vote "Yes" to IPO
- Accenture Files $1 Billion IPO
- Accenture Announces Plans for IPO
- Accenture Ready to Launch IPO
- Ready, Set, IPO
2001 was not a great year for job security, particularly in the accounting and consultancy professions. None of the Big Five firms were able to avoid slashing their workforces, and many smaller firms felt the heat as well.
- PricewaterhouseCoopers to Cut Partners
- PricewaterhouseCoopers to Cut 400 Consultants
- KPMG Consulting Cutting Jobs
- PwC Faces More Staff Cuts, Restructures Workforce
- Accenture to Cut 1,400 Jobs
- Cap Gemini Confirms 2,700 Global Layoffs
- PwC Enters New Phase of Layoffs
- Accenture Cuts Workforce Again
- PwC Continues Job Cut Trend
- KPMG Consulting Offers Alternative to Layoffs
- PwC Continues Job Cuts
- Partner Layoffs, Bonus Cuts Reported at E&Y
- Cap Gemini to Slash Workforce
- Layoffs and New Services Shake Up Cap Gemini
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.
- IRS Loses Taxpayers' Checks
- Mellon Bank Employees Hid, Shredded Tax Returns
- IRS Beefs Up Security after Mellon Bank Fiasco
- Mellon Bank Tax Return Problem Gets Worse
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.
- Melissa Virus on the Loose Again
- Password-Stealing "Trojan" Virus Plagues AOL Users
- Computer Security a Necessary Cost of the Future
- Worldwide Spread of Viruses Boosts E-Security
- Are You Seeing Red?
- Second Generation Code Red Worm is At Large
- Warning Issuess Over Nimda E-Mail Worm
- Virus Alert: W32/Bad Trans Worm Spreading
- Virus Alert: New Virus on the Loose
- E-mail Borne Viral Outbreaks Multiply Tenfold in 2001
Voice of the Editor
Which isn’t completely true. I mean, occasionally I drop by when I manage to sneak out of the nonstop frat party over at Going Concern, but I’m mostly a wallflower over there. I’m happy to say that I’ve been given express permission (or explicit orders, if you like) to wander over here to AccountingWEB more often.
Why is that, you might ask? My job is to replace the irreplaceable Gail Perry as Editor-in-Chief. What does that mean? I don’t really know! I think it’ll be fun getting a feel for things, throwing in my own thoughts here and there, and listening to the discussions you’re having about the accounting profession.