Final Big 5 Holdout may Need to Restructure

Less than three months ago, the Public Accounting Report published an article indicating that Big 5 accounting firm Deloitte & Touche was "bucking the trend" of restructuring and insisted that it would keep its "full service" image available to clients.

However, in an article in the Financial Times this week, Jim Copeland, CEO of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu has indicated that increasing pressure from regulators might force the Big 5 firm to consider restructuring, eliminating the ability to offer both consulting services as well as audit work.

"It's possible regulators could make it so difficult for us to be competitive . . . that we had to re-evaluate strategy," he said. "I think that would be a tragedy."

The SEC has been investigating independence issues with other firms who are providing both audit and consulting services.

Deloitte was to have been the lone holdout among the Big 5 in pursuing a structure unaffected by SEC concerns, but reluctantly admits now that an unwanted restructuring may be necessary to be competitive in the future.

The SEC is reviewing its conflict of interest rules but has yet to set a date for announcing the results. "My fear is that the regulators aren't changing as fast as the accountants," Mr Copeland said.

You may like these other stories...

Here's a CPA who truly walks the walk. On March 15, Frank Ryan, CPA, departed San Diego, California, with plans to be in Ocean City, Maryland, by July 2 to teach a course at the Maryland Association of CPAs’ (MACPA...
When Theodore J. Flynn first joined the Massachusetts Society of CPAs (MSCPA) in 1970, it was a different world and a different profession.  The "Big Eight" were still headquartered in Boston. Vietnam War...
Accountant Rickey Charles Goodrich had it a little too good. Many bean counters would kill to serve as financial guru to the likes of Pearl Jam. Goodrich was hired in 2005, and the following year, he became the CFO of Curtis...

Upcoming CPE Webinars

Apr 17
In this exciting presentation Excel expert David H. Ringstrom, CPA shares tricks that you can use with pivot tables every day. Remember, either you work Excel, or it works you!
Apr 22
Is everyone at your organization meeting your client service expectations? Let client service expert, Kristen Rampe, CPA help you establish a reputation of top-tier service in every facet of your firm during this one hour webinar.
Apr 24
In this session Excel expert David Ringstrom, CPA introduces you to a powerful but underutilized macro feature in Excel.
Apr 25
This material focuses on the principles of accounting for non-profit organizations' revenues. It will include discussions of revenue recognition for cash and non-cash contributions as well as other revenues commonly received by non-profit organizations.