AccountingWEB Weekly News Wrap-Up - Issue 155

THIS WEEK'S TOP NEWS

  1. Lawmakers Agree on Accounting Reform Legislation
  2. Treasury Admits Mistake in Naming KPMG's Tax Clients
  3. Congress Considering Elimination of State Taxes on Interstate Commerce
  4. IRS Publishes Latest Statistics of Income
  5. AICPA Forms Panel to Improve Trust on Internet
  6. SEC Charges Adelphia, Founder With Fraud
  7. New Tax Act Under Review by Congress
  8. Cypress CEO Blasts GAAP, Urges Balance Sheet Integrity
  9. SEC Chairman Counsels Investors on Accounting Jitters
  10. Enron Leads Pack With Dumbest Moments in Business

OUR MISSION

"To inform, to enrich, to enlighten, to entertain."

EDITORIAL

A new era is about to start for the Accounting profession.

Lawmakers on Capitol Hill moved swiftly this week and have
agreed on sweeping legislation affecting corporate responsibility and accounting reform. Among the many provisions in the legislation is the creation of a five-member private sector board to oversee the accounting industry, and significant restrictions on a wide range of consulting and other non-auditing services that accounting firms may provide to their SEC audit clients, including bookkeeping, financial systems design and personnel and legal services.

Many analysts see this legislation as a defeat for accounting industry lobbyists and for the profession as a whole. Many lawmakers see this legislation as a necessary response to public outcry. No matter how you view these changes, they will forever alter the landscape of what services accounting firms offer, how they will charge for these services, and how they will structure their practices for the future.

Michael Platt, CEO

THIS WEEK'S TOP NEWS

1. Lawmakers Agree on Accounting Reform Legislation

U.S. lawmakers reached agreement on accounting reform
legislation, and President Bush plans to sign it into law.
This legislation marks the start of a new era for accountants and investors.

2. Treasury Admits Mistake in Naming KPMG's Tax Clients

The Treasury Department has admitted that prudent measures to protect taxpayers' privacy were not in place when the names of KPMG's clients were revealed by the Department of Justice. The IRS will make sure it doesn't happen again.

3. Congress Considering Elimination of State Taxes on Interstate Commerce

Last week, a subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee
advanced a bill to the full committee that included a clause that would enable certain corporations engaged in interstate commerce to avoid state and local taxes on income from such activities.

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4. IRS Publishes Latest Statistics of Income

The IRS has issued its annual Statistics of Income Bulletin in which trends among the nation's taxpayers are analyzed in income tax return filing, deductions, filing statuses, and more. The latest bulletin covers individual income tax returns filed for 1999 as well as corporate, estate, and not-for-profit returns for the same period of time.

5. AICPA Forms Panel to Improve Trust on Internet

The American Institute of CPAs is helping to put together a
panel of industry experts to provide input to the accounting profession on how to improve standards, so users can trust companies that do business over the Internet.

6. SEC Charges Adelphia, Founder With Fraud

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has filed charges against Adelphia Communications Corp. and the founder and members of his family have been arrested.

AccountingWEB's "SpeakOUT!" Forum

We want to hear from you! You have asked for a forum to express your views on issues affecting the accounting profession, and we have responded with the new SpeakOUT! Forum. Share your opinions and let us know what you think by clicking on the links below:

7. New Tax Act Under Review by Congress

The House Ways and Means Committee is analyzing the Tax
Simplification Act of 2002, a new tax bill that includes a
repeal of the corporate and individual Alternative Minimum Tax, acceleration of some of the features of the Bush tax bill enacted last year, and an annual exclusion for interest and dividend income.

8. Cypress CEO Blasts GAAP, Urges Balance Sheet Integrity

Cypress Semiconductor CEO T. J. Rodgers blasted the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) for causing U.S. companies to move toward proforma numbers.

9. SEC Chairman Counsels Investors on Accounting Jitters

On Friday, July 19, 2002, as the Dow Jones Industrial average hovered at its lowest level in almost four years, SEC Chairman Harvey Pitt gave a whole list of reasons why investors with accounting jitters should stay calm.

10. Enron Leads Pack With Dumbest Moments in Business

No doubt you have your own story about the dumbest thing that ever happened to you during your years in the business world. But can you top these? Business 2.0 has put together a list of the "101 Dumbest Moments in Business." If you've got time for a break, take a few minutes to relax and read about the blunders of others in the business world.

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