Monday, July 18, 2011

Recommended Reading; Recommended Writing

Students often have 'summer reading lists' - and if you work in, around, or among the world of financial accounting, SEC reporting, and auditing - you do too!

Recommended Reading, listed below, includes various FASB and IASB proposed standards, PCAOB Concept Releases and proposed rules, and SEC proposed rulemaking and Staff Papers currently out for public comment. Recommended Writing would include - no, not a 'book report,' but a well thought-out comment letter on any proposal(s) that could impact you as a preparer, investor, auditor, attorney, analyst, board member, or in any other capacity.

Proposals Out For Comment
If you are a regular reader of this blog, you've seen us highlight for you some of these proposals (listed below, along with the applicable comment deadline):

The above list is not meant to be all-inclusive, simply some highlights of some of the broad-based proposals current out for comment.

Additional Reading on Audit-Related Rulemaking
There are many excellent sources of commentary and analysis ranging from 'Cliff Notes' or 'SparkNotes' versions of the above proposed rulemaking, to indepth analysis that ties historical developments and critical analysis (sometimes, very critical, or shall we say, vocal) of the proposals and the events that in some cases preciptated them.

Before I continue to reference a couple of sources of recommended reading, please note the disclaimer that appears on the right side of this blog. Additionally, please note that I personally may not agree with the opinions taken by these other writers, but I believe reading their posts can provide some important food for thought, particularly for those contemplating drafting comment letters on the related proposals.

These writers have done a fair amount of research (the first post below, by Francine McKenna, links to a plethora of related material, including speeches and analysis, in addition to her own observations) and have seen a fair amount of things in their professional careers (the second author below, Jim Peterson, served as a senior attorney and partner at Andersen) to make it worth your while to take a look at these posts, both of which relate to the first item listed above, the PCAOB's Concept Release on the auditor's reporting model. The PCAOB's Concept Release is significant in that it could be the first step toward what could potentially result in major changes to the content of the auditor's report, therein potentially changing the way audits are conducted. Or, not (depending on analysis of the proposals and practical feedback provided in the comment letter process and the upcoming public roundtable, date t/b/a). I suggest reading:

Securities Law, Investor Relations

Some other go-to sources (which again, I may not always agree with, but provide useful reading to get up to speed on an issue, and related analysis) on proposed rulemaking such as the items listed above, in particular SEC rulemaking, include: Blog by Broc Romanek & Dave Lynn

IR Web Report by Dominic Jones, Pam Agnew & their team

Loyal opposition

On the subject of IFRS convergence, and particular FASB, IASB proposals, voices of the 'loyal opposition' often include:

The Accounting Onion by Tom Selling, and

The Summa, by Prof. Dave Albrecht.

See also these useful blog aggregators and listservs; many voices, one platform:

Securities Mosaic Blogwatch (sub req'd)

AccountingWEB Blogger's Crew

CPAs-L Listserv

Going Concern (not for the faint of heart)

Magazines/websites and other publications:

Financial Executive Magazine, published by FEI, and of course the FEI blog

The Analyst's Accounting Observer, by Jack Ciesielski (sub req'd)

BNA Daily Report for Executives (the home of Steve Burkholder, Denise Lugo, and many other exceptional writers particularly on the FASB/IASB beat) (sub req'd)

CFO Magazine, and and more

Compliance Week (sub req'd)

This list of recommended reading/resources is not meant to be a complete listing, but meant to provide some alternative points of view and information to assist you in reviewing and potentially preparing comment letters on some of this summer's significant proposed rulemaking.

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