US regulator wants to supervise UK firms
A new US watchdog insists on supervising accountancy firms in Europe, Asia and the Middle East if they audit any company whose shares are traded in the US.
After a year of appointments and debate about its structure, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board has been slowly getting to work in March.
One of its first deeds was to meet with the US Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington and insist that all foreign accountancy firms working for US traded companies must register with the new board, the Times reported today.
The demand ignores a lengthy lobby by British and European accounting representatives to allow an exemption to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and flexibility promises made by former SEC chairman Harvey Pitt.
The new rule would give US regulators worldwide control over the structure of firms and accounting standards.