The strange case of the Disappearing Audited accounts
Graydon researchers have discovered that of the 1, 200,000 or so sets of accounts for the 2006 fiscal year filed at Companies House, only 13% of them were fully audited. This is of course the result of the government’s introduction of the audit threshold rules in 2004, aimed at helping small businesses save money and relieving them of legislative burden. Well, it looks as if most UK businesses have taken advantage of the new rules, but I’m a little concerned about the degradation in the quality of credible data being filed at the Registry. Credit agencies like the one I run are using information from Companies House every day to help credit score companies, and when you come across unaudited "balance sheets" that hmmmmm, don’t balance, for instance, it makes you start to wonder whether you can trust the other financial data there.No wonder some credit agencies are investing in other types of credit information like trade payment data in order to produce credit reports in the future. It’s a shame, because in terms of public record information, the UK was once the toast of the world.I wonder how we stack up now?