US regulator tones down audit transparency plans

MOVES TO increase audit transparency have been scaled back by US regulator the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board.

Initial proposals requiring lead engagement partners to sign audit reports have been dropped. Instead, lead partners must simply disclose their name and that of other professionals unaffiliated with the auditor who worked on the report.

Chairman James R Doty (pictured) said: “This proposal would increase transparency of public company audits by providing investors with information about certain key participants in the audit,” as well as align disclosure rules more closely with those of non-US engagement partners.

A concept release first proposed the auditor signature requirement in mid-2009 and was followed by a discussion earlier this month. Stakeholders have until 9 January 2012 to comment on the revised proposals.

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