Auditor Resource Center

Public company auditors serve as independent gatekeepers for companies seeking access to US capital markets, building trust and confidence in company reported financial information through the assurance services they provide.

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Public company auditors serve as independent gatekeepers for companies seeking access to US capital markets, some of the largest and most liquid in the world. Auditors provide an independently conducted annual audit in order for public companies to remain in good standing under US law. This is a vital step in the corporate reporting ecosystem that delivers investor confidence and trust in our markets. The auditing profession has steadily developed, systemized, and strengthened their trust and confidence-building role in providing assurance related to company financial statements and internal control over financial reporting.

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Value of the Audit

This report examines the importance of well-functioning capital markets to the economy, the historical importance of audited financial statements, and the roles and responsibilities of each key stakeholder in the US financial reporting supply chain.

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Auditors Play a Vital Role in Our Capital Markets

The vital role of the auditor in maintaining the health of our capital markets cannot be understated. As our capital markets evolve, so does the role of the auditor. Emerging landscapes like ESG reporting, new technologies, and unprecedented global circumstances demand that auditors continue to adapt to the needs of the capital markets. Auditors are uniquely prepared to answer the call.

The pace of change in business is accelerating, and the volume of information available to investors and other stakeholders in the US financial reporting ecosystem continues to grow. Investors and others are using both audited financial statements and—increasingly—unaudited company-prepared information to make decisions.

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Cybersecurity can have pervasive impacts on companies. Organizations face numerous threats with varying consequences—all in an environment marked by rapid technological change. With technology advancing and the COVID-19 pandemic causing increased remote working arrangements, companies are facing new and evolving cybersecurity threats.

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Investors and other stakeholders are calling on companies to disclose more about their sustainability and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) strategies. This call for transparency is not new, but there is a heightened focus on this reporting in response to investors’ growing interests in and incorporation of sustainability considerations into their investment strategies.

Non-GAAP financial measures are used by various stakeholders for several reasons, including valuing companies, determining executive compensation, and as a means of communicating a company’s individual story or business strategy. Similarly, key performance indicators (KPIs) are disclosed by management to provide additional insights into the company’s performance or operations. In times of uncertainty and market volatility, these measures may become increasingly useful to a company’s ability to communicate supplemental information to investors and other stakeholders.

Audit Insider Newsletter

Don’t miss expert insights and the state of the profession and the latest resources for auditors in this monthly newsletter.

The CAQ produces a variety of resources available to auditors to help them navigate our ever-changing financial ecosystem.

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