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CAQ Snapshot: November 2019

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Opportunities to Enhance Audit Committee Disclosure Highlighted in New CAQ/Audit Analytics Report

Although growth has been steady in the amount of information provided in audit committee disclosures, significant opportunities continue to exist to enhance transparency in this area, according to the 2019 edition of the Audit Committee Transparency Barometer. A report issued jointly by the Center for Audit Quality (CAQ) and Audit Analytics, the Barometer tracks S&P Composite 1500 proxy disclosures to gauge transparency regarding audit committee oversight of the external auditor and other key financial reporting topics.

As in past years, the Barometer shows positive developments in 2019. Several areas of disclosure have reached robust levels, and cybersecurity has become a disclosure hotspot. Yet the Barometer also reveals signs that disclosure efforts are slowing, based on year-over-year growth, and disclosure levels in some areas remain low.

In light of these trends, the Barometer highlights several opportunities for audit committees to enhance transparency, including disclosure related to significant areas of discussion between the audit committee and external auditor, auditor evaluation and engagement partner selection, and compensation.

For a video overview of the Barometer, watch a new edition of Profession in Focus featuring the CAQ’s Vanessa Teitelbaum, CPA, Technical Director of Professional Practice, and Matt Sickmiller, CPA, Technical Manager of Professional Practice.

CAQ Requests Auditing-Related Academic Research Proposals

The CAQ issued its 12th annual request for proposals (RFP) to fund independent academic research on projects of interest to the auditing profession. To date, the CAQ has funded 44 academic research projects under the auspices of its Research Advisory Board, which comprises representatives from academia and the public company auditing profession.

The CAQ’s RFP targets two key topics for 2020—corporate disclosures of nonfinancial information and non-GAAP financial measures—and also welcomes proposals on topics of continued interest, including critical audit matters, innovative technologies used in the audit, and professional skepticism, among others.

To be considered, proposals must be submitted by March 16, 2020, through the CAQ’s online submission form. Proposals will be reviewed by the CAQ’s Research Advisory Board, and grants will be announced in June 2020.

Additionally, as a reminder, the RFP for the 2020 Access to Audit Personnel grant cycle is still open, with a deadline for proposals of February 6, 2020. Learn more about the Access to Audit Personnel program on the CAQ website.

Just Ahead! Free CPE Webcast on Assessing Corporate Culture

It’s not too late to register for the Anti-Fraud Collaboration’s December 3 webcast. Earn up to 1.5 Behavioral Ethics CPE credits through this 90-minute event, which will highlight leading qualitative and quantitative practices that companies can use to conduct a robust culture assessment.

Moderated by CAQ Executive Director Julie Bell Lindsay, the free webcast will provide expert insights from the following panelists: Joe Dettmann, Principal in EY’s People Advisory Services; Melody Jones, Independent Board Director and Founder of 32-80 Advisors; Stacey Schabel, Vice President & Chief Audit Executive at Jackson Holdings LLC; and Caroline Sullivan, Senior Vice President & Corporate Controller at Moody’s Corporation.

The CAQ is a founding member of the Anti-Fraud Collaboration, along with Financial Executives International, the National Association of Corporate Directors, and The Institute of Internal Auditors.

Carolyn Hall Joins CAQ Professional Practice Team

In November, the CAQ welcomed Carolyn Hall, CPA, as a Technical Manager on the CAQ’s Professional Practice team. Carolyn comes to the CAQ from Deloitte & Touche LLP, where she worked as an Audit Manager on a variety of public company audits, primarily in the aerospace and defense and technology industries. Licensed as a CPA in Virginia, Carolyn holds bachelor of business administration and master of accounting degrees from James Madison University.

Check Out These Upcoming Events

AICPA Conference on Current SEC and PCAOB Developments

December 9–11; Washington, DC
The CAQ’s Julie Bell Lindsay will deliver keynote remarks at this annual American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) event, which brings together top policymakers and representatives from the profession to discuss important accounting, auditing, and regulatory developments.

American Accounting Association Auditing Section Midyear Meeting

January 16–18, 2020; Houston, TX
At this event, the CAQ will participate in an Excellence in Auditing Education Workshop, “How Are Innovations in Technology Influencing the Audits of Today and Tomorrow?” Additionally, CAQ Executive Director Julie Bell Lindsay will moderate a panel providing insights into how business schools can most effectively speak to accounting students about the attractiveness of a purpose-driven career in audit.