PracticeConsultingWard prepares to attack SEC proposals

Ward prepares to attack SEC proposals

President of the English ICA Graham Ward will today hit out against the US Security Exchange Commission's proposals for auditor independence.

When he testifies at the SEC hearings in New York later today, Ward will argue that forcing UK audit firms with client companies listed in the US to comply with detailed rules would be ‘counter-productive’.

Ward believes the UK ‘framework approach’, which sets out fundamental ethical principles backed by professional education and enforcement, is in practice more rigorous than the US rule-based approach. He will also tell the hearing there is no evidence that the provision of non-audit services has resulted in a decline in the quality of the audit.

Today’s meeting is the second public hearing called to debate the SEC’s proposals on auditor independence. Chaired by Arthur Levitt, the SEC is seeking to update the requirements governing auditors’ investments in clients and the scope of services provided to audit clients.

The English ICA has stated, however, that auditors should not be put in the position of having to audit a significant component of the financial statements to which they were linked. But Ward deems that by trying to prohibit some advisory services while allowing others, the SEC proposals contain arbitrary distinctions that will not stand the test of time.

KPMG chief Stephen Butler yesterday chose to cancel his planned appearance at the hearing. Butler claimed his request to change his contribution to the morning because of another afternoon engagement had been rejected. But the SEC argued it had done its best to accommodate the many witnesses’ diverse scheduling needs.

KPMG chief pulls out of SEC hearings

Big Five maintain pressure on SEC

Agenda for second SEC hearing on auditor independence

SEC website

Related Articles

5 tips for SMEs to protect cash flow

Accounting Software 5 tips for SMEs to protect cash flow

5m Alia Shoaib, Reporter
Tyrie on Finance Bill 2017: ‘Making Tax Policy Better’

Consulting Tyrie on Finance Bill 2017: ‘Making Tax Policy Better’

11m Stephanie Wix, Writer
Managing partner Q&A - the year ahead: Richard Toone, CVR Global

Accounting Firms Managing partner Q&A - the year ahead: Richard Toone, CVR Global

12m Kevin Reed, Writer
Deloitte 'self-imposes exile' on government contracts to defuse PM row

Accounting Firms Deloitte 'self-imposes exile' on government contracts to defuse PM row

12m Kevin Reed, Writer
Managing partner Q&A - the year ahead: Julie Adams, Menzies

Accounting Firms Managing partner Q&A - the year ahead: Julie Adams, Menzies

12m Kevin Reed, Writer
Friday Afternoon Live: Deloitte's tech thing; PAC wants HMRC 'contingencies'; and Sports Direct

Business Regulation Friday Afternoon Live: Deloitte's tech thing; PAC wants HMRC 'contingencies'; and Sports Direct

1y Kevin Reed, Writer
Friday Afternoon Live: HMRC complaints rise; Deloitte scoops big audits; and corporate reporting woes

Audit Friday Afternoon Live: HMRC complaints rise; Deloitte scoops big audits; and corporate reporting woes

1y Kevin Reed, Writer
New head of equity capital markets for KPMG

Accounting Firms New head of equity capital markets for KPMG

1y Stephanie Wix, Writer