We are skeptical about this claim. Auditing, we are often reminded, is not mechanical, but requires numerous subtle judgments. Similarly, audit committees may wish to consider whether to adopt formal or informal policies concerning when or whether to engage the company's auditing firm to provide non-audit services.
The Final Rules Will Not Diminish Audit Quality Some Mgt 449 week 3 team assignment expressed concern that the proposed restrictions on non-audit services would hurt audit quality.
Under the proxy disclosure rule being adopted, registrants will have to disclose, among other things, the aggregate fees billed for the audit in the most recent fiscal year, the aggregate fees billed for financial information systems design and implementation, and the aggregate fees billed for non-audit services performed by the auditor in the most recent fiscal year.
Many who provided those perspectives nonetheless urged that we proceed with our rule. The asserted lack of evidence isolating those influences and linking them to questionable audit judgments simply does not prove that an auditor's judgment is unlikely to be affected because of an auditor's economic interest in a non-audit relationship.
We are otherwise concerned about non-audit services because of the overall economic incentives they create and because of the interdependence that develops between the auditor and the audit client in the course of the non-audit relationship. This risk of liability is attributable to a variety of factors, only one of which is the risk of audit failure.
Moreover, as we explain below, the asserted absence of conclusive empirical evidence on this point is not particularly telling.
In addition, companies must provide certain disclosures about their audit committee. Independence rules are similar, though not identical, to conflict of interest rules. For us, the question is not whether an auditor who otherwise would be without bias will inevitably become biased and then intentionally disregard a false statement in a client's financial statements.
But, as noted above, the trend of available data suggests a rapid increase in the provision of non-audit services to audit clients -- in4. It is an argument without limitation that takes no account of the negative impact on audit quality from an independence impairment.
As more fully discussed below, we are adopting rules, modified in response to almost 3, comment letters we received on our proposal, written and oral testimony from four days of public hearings about 35 hours of testimony from almost witnessesacademic studies, surveys and other professional literature.
The increasing importance of non-audit services to accounting firms is further evidenced by suggestions that the audit has become merely a "commodity" and that the greater profit opportunities for auditors come from using audits as a platform from which to sell more lucrative non-audit services.
Some commenters agreed with our proposals. We have adopted other rules with a similar attentiveness to the need to sustain investor confidence in the public securities markets. Disclosure of Non-Audit Services. The nature of the non-audit services that accounting firms provide to their audit clients has changed, and the revenues from these services have dramatically increased.
Developments which detract from this will surely damage the professional status of CPA firms and lead to suspicions and doubts that will be detrimental to the continued reliance of the public upon the profession without further and more drastic governmental intrusion.
We must make judgments about the circumstances that render a loss of auditor objectivity more or less likely. Two academics presented research tending to show that subtle but powerful psychological factors skew the perceptions and judgments of persons - including auditors - who have a stake in the outcome of those judgments.
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