SEC Takes One Step Back

SEC Chairman Arthur Levitt has indicated his willingness to take steps toward "mending and renewing the relationship between the SEC, the AICPA, and the [accounting] profession" in an address Tuesday to members of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

Levitt has been in the news repeatedly over the past year regarding his proposed auditor independence guidelines which would prevent accounting firms from performing non-audit services for audit clients.

The accounting industry recently enlisted the support of members of Congress who were sympathetic to the auditors' cause, and who heard testimony from Levitt regarding his desire to limit the scope of services of the accounting profession.

The SEC has now indicated it may be inclined to allow consulting services to continue as long as accounting firms disclose in SEC filings the amount of consultancy fees earned.

Follow our complete coverage of the SEC proposed guidelines on auditor independence.

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