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Ebookers CFO worries over US rule changes

British companies listed in the US are having to 'tread on eggshells' due to the rapidly changing US accounting regulation caused by the fallout from Enron, according to a leading UK chief financial officer.

Link: Profile: Ebookers CFO Nigel Addison Smith

Ebookers CFO Nigel Addison Smith told Accountancy Age this week that the main problem the online travel company is facing as it announces its half-year results is the impact of the ever-changing US accounting rules.

He said:’It’s like walking on eggshells because UK accounting standards and the Securities Exchange Commission requirements are changing rapidly. We haveto look daily to see if there are any changes.We are wary of what we say and do,things are evolving so fast.’

Other UK companies listed in the US, such as Abbey National and Cadbury Schweppes, must also be extra careful as their leaders are being forced to sign sworn statements pledging the accuracy of their accounts following the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

These are the first half-year results ebookers has reported since it listed on the London Stock Exchange in April of last year.The company also trades on the US NASDAQ, where it publishes quarterly results.

The company announced a 46% growth in sales, with a gross profit of £14m and a drop in net losses despite weakness in the travel industry.

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