Former SEC Chief Accountant Credits Auditors

John Merchant, CPA, CFE reports that Lynn Turner, former chief accountant of the Securities and Exchange Commission, credited financial statement auditors for contributing to the general decline in major financial statement frauds since the collapse of Enron and WorldCom.  Turner noted that auditors have stood behind fair value and tried to “get the numbers right”.  At the same time he criticized the Financial Accounting Standards Board for doing an abysmal job in standards setting, particularly with regard to rules on presentation of special purpose entities and off-balance-sheet-items.  He also expressed skepticism about the future role of the International Accounting Standards Board noting that the IASB will never be able to develop high quality standards until it stops bending to political pressure.

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