News Wrap-Up - Issue 229

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  1. SEC Considering Changes to Best-Price Rule
  2. Group Criticizes High Tax Refund Anticipation Loan Fees
  3. EU Considers Audit Firm, Lead Partner Rotation Rule
  4. Whistle-Blower Wins Protection Under Sarbanes-Oxley
  5. "Current Liability" Rules Could Change Under FASB Plan
  6. Representative Stearn Calls for GAAP Overhaul
  7. IRS Nabs 22 Floridians in Scheme that Netted $4.1 Million
  8. New York Goes After Internet Sales Taxes; Who’s Next?
  9. CPAs Predict More Audits of Small Businesses by the IRS
  10. Whistle-Blower Wins Protection Under Sarbanes-Oxley


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Practitioners Publishing Company (PPC)

Find your Busy Season guidance, e-tools and CPE – and still get 15% off many 2003 PPC title releases – at the all-new – or, call 800-323-8734, option 6.


Like most of the country, I watched the Super Bowl this past weekend and found it very regrettable that such a great game was overshadowed by an unfortunate half-time incident. The post-game talk was all about the "malfunction," and all the greatness of a really good game never got the air time it deserved.

But this type of reaction isn't limited to the world of entertainment. In our everyday business lives, all of us are continually trying to stand out - to be exceptional at what we do - and expect our clients will notice and appreciate us for that. But one unfortunate malfunction - whether it's returning a client's tax return later than promised, taking too many personal phone calls on a cell phone while performing an audit in the field, or any number of activities that goes against the client's expectations - can overshadow all of the greatness of our achievements with the client and may end up being the one thing they talk about from our interaction with them.

We need to constantly remind ourselves that every client expectation needs to be known, understood, managed when necessary, dealt with quickly if off track, and reinforced by everyone on our team professionally and consistently. In this competitive landscape, no one can afford to let even one negative incident overshadow all the great things we are all doing for our clients. Just my two cents...

Michael Platt
AccountingWEB, Inc.

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  1. SEC Considering Changes to Best-Price Rule

The Securities and Exchange Commission may require that the New York Stock Exchange revise the rule that forces markets to get investors the best price, even if it means they have to go to a competing market to get it.

  1. Groups Criticize High Tax Refund Anticipation Loan Fees

Consumer Federation of America and the National Consumer Law Center are protesting the high fees tax preparers charge to taxpayers seeking instant refunds on their expected tax returns. The effective annual percentage rates on these loans can be as high as 700 percent.

  1. EU Considers Audit Firm, Lead Partner Rotation Rule

The European Union is considering rules that would require publicly listed companies to rotate auditors every seven years or to change the senior partner in charge of the audit every five years. The proposed rules changes come from the European Commission in the wake of the Parmalat scandal in Italy, which was Europe’s version of Enron. Member states and the European Parliament must approve commission rules.


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  1. Does Corporate America Need CPOs?

First there was the chief executive officer and the chief financial officer. With scandals and fraud came the advent of the chief accountability officer and the chief ethics,
knowledge, regulatory and disclosure officers, to name a few. Now some would like to install chief process officers (CPO) to help companies comply with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

  1. "Current Liability" Rules Could Change Under FASB Plan

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) is considering a stricter definition of a "current liability," in a proposal to make U.S. rules more similar to international standards.


  1. Representative Stearn Calls for GAAP Overhaul
  2. IRS Nabs 22 Floridians in Scheme that Netted $4.1 Million
  3. New York Goes After Internet Sales Taxes
  4. CPAs Predict More Audits of Small Businesses by the IRS
  5. Whistle-Blower Wins Protection Under Sarbanes-Oxley
  6. President's Savings Proposals: Tax-Free Savings & Retirement Security
  7. NYSE's Thain Seeks to Enhance Big Board’s Electronic Capabilities
  8. Massachusetts Financial Strikes Tentative Deal with Regulators
  9. GASB Issues Revised Exposure Draft on Employer Reporting of Other Postemployment Benefits
  10. ICMA Announces Enhancements to CMA Certification Program


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  1. Leveraging Tax Season Discussions to Nurture Relationships
  2. Selling on the Inside: Attitude and Aptitude
  3. How to Walk Your Talk: Leadership and Sponsorship in Action


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