News Wrap-Up - Issue 227

This News Wrap-Up Brought To You By:

Practitioners Publishing Company (PPC)

THIS WEEK'S NEWS

  1. The Top 10 Scams, Schemes & Scandals For 2004
  2. SEC Takes Action Against Grant Thornton, Doeren Mayhew
  3. Adecco Executives Resign Amidst Accounting Probes
  4. EU Official Seeks Tighter Rules to Prevent Future Scandals
  5. Auditors Find Fraud at HealthSouth Could Total $4.6 Billion
  6. New Arrest in Parmalat Scandal, Accounting Firms Named in Probe
  7. IRS Pulls Back From Flagging Free E-Filers For Now
  8. Plante & Moran Plans Spring Merger With Chicago Firm
  9. Congress to Consider Withholding Taxes From Contractor Pay
  10. Computer Alert: New Threat to E-Mail Databases
  11. IRS Urges Taxpayers to Check Earned Income Tax Credit Eligibility

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*** PLATT’S PERSPECTIVE ***

OK, I’ll admit it. I’m really tired of reading about scandals, fraud and misconduct in the accounting and finance community. Like you, I’m starting to get numb to the weekly barrage of negativity about the way U.S. business works, and would rather focus on the positive – what are CPA firms doing right that we can learn from and emulate?

But consider this - for every reported scandal there is a valuable lesson to learn. For most of us, the "Big" scandals like Enron and WorldCom seem pretty distant from the day-to-day activities that we all encounter. But some of the smaller cases represent situations and circumstances that each one of us might encounter on any given day, and each one helps us redefine where our own ethical lines in the sand are drawn.

So rather than drowning out all of the bad news, let me recommend that you use it as a discussion tool in your conference room to reinforce your culture, standards and ethics among your staff. They are reading about the scandals too, and may identify with situations that they have encountered, so don’t miss the opportunity to turn the negative news into a positive learning opportunity for all.

Michael Platt
AccountingWEB, Inc.

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THIS WEEK'S NEWS

  1. The Top 10 Scams, Schemes & Scandals For 2004

State securities regulators forecast that investors will be challenged with increasingly complex and confusing investment frauds and identified the Top 10 schemes investors are likely to see this coming year.

  1. SEC Takes Action Against Grant Thornton, Doeren Mayhew

The Securities and Exchange Commission has filed an enforcement action charging Grant Thornton and Michigan based Doeren Mayhew with participating in the violation of antifraud and reporting provisions of federal securities law in connection with work done in 1998 for a now-defunct company.

  1. Adecco Executives Resign Amidst Accounting Probes

The Swiss temporary-staffing company Adecco SA announced Friday that its chief financial officer and the head of its North American branch have resigned as the result of an accounting investigation into alleged accounting problems.

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  1. EU Official Seeks Tighter Rules to Prevent Future Scandals

A senior European Union official called for tougher accounting rules Tuesday, and said the Parmalat scandal in Italy may prove to be even worse than the collapse of Enron in the U.S. "In the light of the Parmalat case, it is imperative that member states envisage the quick implementation of new rules," Bolkestein told reporters after discussing the case with EU finance ministers.

  1. Auditors Find Fraud at HealthSouth Could Total $4.6 Billion

Auditors looking into the fraud at HealthSouth have found it to be far more extensive than originally thought—as much as $4.6 billion in all. Initially, estimates put the fraud at $3.5 billion at the Birmingham, AL-based operator of rehabilitative clinics.

MORE NEWS...

  1. New Arrest in Parmalat Scandal, Accounting Firms Named in Probe
  2. IRS Pulls Back From Flagging Free E-Filers For Now
  3. Plante & Moran Plans Spring Merger With Chicago Firm
  4. Congress to Consider Withholding Taxes From Contractor Pay
  5. Computer Alert: New Threat to E-Mail Databases
  6. IRS Urges Taxpayers to Check Earned Income Tax Credit Eligibility

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  1. Top Ten Most Often Missed Business Tax Deductions
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  3. Computer Alert: New Threat to E-Mail Databases
  4. Congress to Consider Withholding Taxes From Contractor Pay
  5. Microsoft Issues Security Bulletin; One Critical

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