PracticeConsultingTop 50: The arrogance of keeping Big Five results secret.

Top 50: The arrogance of keeping Big Five results secret.

For two of the largest accountancy firms in the country to treat their UK annual results like some kind of state secret is surely a travesty.

Despite increasing openness among their rivals, both in the Big Five and mid-tier, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Andersen refuse to reveal their British earnings to the outside world.

The irony of two businesses that make a substantial part of their income from ensuring others accurately report their financial results to stakeholders is something that has been pointed out many times.

They may argue that they don’t have shareholders, but the idea that investors are the only stakeholders in a business is fast becoming outdated. There are clients, staff and regulators to think about – not to mention the public interest that the firms, in their capacity as auditors, are paid so much to protect.

Yet both firms continue to assume they are somehow exempt from these pressures. How long can this arrogance continue?

Links

See the Accountancy Age Top 50 table

Last year’s Top 50 table

UK firms push £7bn mark

Consolidation is alive and well

Mixed success as Uncle Sam seeks to split Big Five

Huge growth in corporate finance and insolvency

New big fish gobbles up mid-tier rivals

Traditional services stay strong

The fastest growing firms

Top 50: Opinion

It’s all about perception, stupid

The arrogance of keeping Big Five results secret

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