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2017 Audit Fee Survey Report

Jan 16, 2018

On January 16, 2018, Financial Executives International (FEI) released their 2017 Audit Fee Survey Report, where public company respondents reported a median 1.3 percent audit fee increase, compared with 1.6 percent in the 2016 edition of the report.

Mergers and acquisitions, growing documentation requests from external auditors and new accounting standards were among the factors contributing to higher fees.

M&A contributed to higher audit fees for nearly three-fourths of the 80 public companies that reported fee increases for their 2016 audits. For instance, one chief accounting officer at a healthcare provider cited acquisition-related valuation services and purchase accounting reviews as major factors for higher audit fees.

The new revenue standard has had a limited effect on audit fees so far, but 68 percent of respondents expect fees to increase for audits of their 2017 results and in upcoming PCAOB inspections.

Overall, 2,296 registrants (36 percent) reported an audit fee decrease, while 2,120 registrants (33 percent) reported an increase in their audit fees.

Review the report on FEI's website.

AASB Response – Monitoring Group Consultation Paper, Strengthening the Governance and Oversight of the International Audit-related Standard-setting Boards in the Public Interest

Mar 02, 2018

On March 2, 2018, the Auditing and Assurance Standards Board's (AASB) response to the Monitoring Group’s consultation paper, which sets out options that have the potential to dramatically reform the global audit standard-setting process, was posted.

The AASB's response outlines in detail their observations on the proposals, noting both areas they support and those that should be re-examined.

Review the response posted on the IOSCO's website.

AASOC Response – Monitoring Group Consultation Paper, Strengthening the Governance and Oversight of the International Audit-related Standard-setting Boards in the Public Interest

Mar 02, 2018

On March 2, 2018, the Auditing and Assurance Standards Oversight Council's (AASOC) response to the Monitoring Group’s consultation paper was posted. The response outlines what proposals they agree with, have concerns with, and provides overall comments for the Monitoring Group’s consideration.

There are a number of areas where the AASOC has concerns with the proposals as set forth in the consultation paper and they offered the following comments for consideration:

  • AASOC does not support establishing a single board to cover both auditing and assurance and ethical standards as they see this as contradicting the multi-stakeholder approach they support.
  • AASOC disagrees with separating the setting of ethical standards for auditors from those of other professional accountants.
  • AASOC does not support moving to a simple majority vote of the boards to approve a new or revised standard; rather, the AASOC supports the current approach of requiring a two-thirds majority.

Review the response posted on the IOSCO's website.

AASOC Updates Terms of Reference

Feb 02, 2018

On February 2, 2018, the Auditing and Assurance Standards Oversight Council (AASOC) released its revised Terms of Reference, which were updated following a joint review of the activities of AASOC and AcSOC.

The Terms of Reference of both Councils are now more closely aligned and reflect current oversight procedures.

Review the Terms of Reference on the AcSOC's website.

Basis for Conclusions – CSAE 3530, Attestation Engagements to Report on Compliance and CSAE 3531, Direct Engagements to Report on Compliance

Mar 01, 2018

On March 1, 2018, the Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (AASB) released a summary of the process it followed in developing the standards and the Board’s conclusions regarding significant comments received in response to its Exposure Draft and Re-exposure Draft.

CSAE 3530 and CSAE 3531 replace the following Sections:


The standards also replace AUDITING FOR COMPLIANCE WITH LEGISLATIVE AND RELATED AUTHORITIES IN THE PUBLIC SECTOR, paragraphs PS 5300.11-.13, addressing engagements that require an auditor, depending on the audit mandate, to express an opinion on whether an entity complied with specified authorities or whether its transactions were carried out in compliance with specified authorities.

Effective when the practitioner's report is dated on or after April 1, 2019.

Download the Basis for Conclusions on the AASB's website.

Big Four alumni can bias auditors

Feb 08, 2018

On February 8, 2018, Accounting Today released an article on a new academic study that scrutinizes how bias may play a role when an auditor used to work in the same accounting firm as the CFO of the company being audited.

The study looked at the “familiarity threat” to auditor independence when a CFO or other top executive of a company being audited used to be employed by the firm performing the audit. Before the wave of accounting scandals of the early 2000s, approximately one-third of the biggest U.S. corporations had top executives who were alumni of their companies' outside auditing firms. That included Enron, Global Crossing and Waste Management, which all fell prey to the accounting scandals.

Review the full article on Accounting Today's website.

CPAB Board of Directors Introduces Carol Paradine as New Chief Executive Officer

Jan 30, 2018

On January 30, 2018, the Canadian Public Accountability Board (CPAB) appointed Carol Paradine as its new Chief Executive Officer, effective March 1, 2018.

A former partner in a major national public accounting and audit firm, Carol brings a wealth of auditing experience for a range of public companies across the country.  Serving as a member of the firm’s executive committee and Managing Partner for Leadership Development and Succession, she has a proven track record in moving organizations to the next level – with a particular focus on attracting and developing high-performance teams. Carol also brings industry experience as a senior financial officer to her new role.

Review the press release on the CPAB's website.

Experts Appointed to IAASB Project Advisory Panel

Mar 13, 2018

On March 13, 2018, the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) Emerging Forms of External Reporting (EER) Task Force announced the appointment of 23 individuals to the recently-established EER Assurance Project Advisory Panel.

Among the new appointments is Charlotte Drain, a Director with over ten years’ experience of providing advisory and assurance services in the field of sustainability and has a specific focus on Integrated Reporting.

The Advisory Panel appointees will make a significant contribution to further IAASB’s work on EER assurance. Their involvement will include:

  • advising the EER Task Force on the application of ISAE 3000 (Revised) to EER engagements, and other matters within the scope of the approved Project Proposal, and providing insights into current practice across different jurisdictions and contexts;
  • providing input to the development of the non-authoritative guidance that the IAASB plans to issue; and
  • providing occasional research input on matters relating to EER assurance engagements.

Review the announcement on the IAASB's website.

Four Hot Topics Internal Audit Should Be Ready To Address In 2018

Feb 08, 2018

On February 8, 2018, Financial Executives International (FEI) released an article on how as CFOs and other leaders expect internal audit teams to be strategic, focusing more on the risks and issues of the future than only those of the past, just 28 percent of surveyed chief audit executives (CAEs) believe their functions have a strong impact and influence within their organizations.

Heading into 2018, it will therefore be important for CAEs to chart paths toward impacting and influencing their organizations. But to enhance their performance, value, and influence, internal audit groups need to be ready to address a number of high-impact issues with leadership in the year ahead.

Review the full article on FEI's website.

IAASB Chairman Submits Comment Letter to the Monitoring Group

Feb 08, 2018

On February 8, 2018, the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) released a comment letter submitted by IAASB Chairman Arnold Schilder to the Monitoring Group's Consultation Paper, "Strengthening the Governance and Oversight of the International Audit-related Standard-setting Boards in the Public Interest".

In the comment letter, he identifies the two principal dimensions – one at the governance and strategic level, the other at the operating level – that offer the potential to alleviate so-called perceptions of undue influence by any stakeholder group and improve the axes of relevance, timeliness and public interest. These are:

  1. Agreeing Standard Setting Strategy & Priorities – that is, the mechanism around WHAT ISSUES the IAASB is to focus on and AT WHAT PACE, and which ones they will not deal with at any point in time.
  2. Recalibrating the Task Force Model – that is, ensuring the veracity of the INPUT and on WHOSE recommendations the IAASB’s deliberations and decision-making are based.

Review the press release and comment letter on the IAASB's website.

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