Accountancy Daily

Insight / FTSE 100 alumni survey 2017: Big Four dominate boardrooms and regulator

In our exclusive survey of FTSE 100 boards, Philip Smith analyses the undeniable power of the Big four in corporate boardrooms and in the Financial Reporting Council's (FRC) senior executive team, with 61 out of 100 audit committee chairs held by a Big Four alumni

Insight / Treasury launches bid to regulate Bitcoin

Treasury efforts are underway to impose controls on crytpocurrencies such as Bitcoin amid concerns they are used to launder money and dodge tax

Insight / Haines Watts adds £10m to turnover with Westbury merger

Haines Watts, ranked at 13 in the Accountancy league table of top 75 firms, has expanded its London presence with the acquisition of Westbury Chartered Accountants based in Farringdon, Central London

Tax / Trump tax reforms introduce 20% corporate tax rate

Amid sometimes chaotic scenes, the US Senate has passed a major tax reform bill which will slash the US corporate tax rate to 20%, in what is being heralded as President Donald Trump’s first big legislative victory in his push to create a ‘once in a generation’ change to the US tax code

Tax / HMRC clarifies guidance on VAT zero-rating of building construction

HMRC has updated VAT guidance on when building construction may be zero-rated if sites were previously occupied by other premises, following legal challenges to the existing rules

Tax / Case: HMRC assessment powers curbed by FTT

The Upper Tribunal allowed an appeal against a First Tier Tribunal (FTT) decision after finding that HMRC does not have free-standing powers to tax chargeable gains, following the expiry of a declaration of intention to roll over the gains

Insight / Liverpool couple jailed for £470K tax and benefit fraud

A Liverpool couple who ran a pub and garage in the city have been jailed for a total of seven years for a £470,000 tax and benefit fraud

Audit / Two thirds of FTSE 100 CFOs are ex-Big Four

Exclusive research conducted by Accountancy illustrates just how dominant the Big Four is as a force throughout FTSE 100 boardrooms

Tax / Entrepreneurs’ relief used by 39% to reduce CGT in asset disposal

Despite high levels of awareness of entrepreneurs’ relief, the tax advantage is not the main motivating factor when taxpayers are making decisions about investing or disposing of assets despite capital gains tax (CGT) advantages

Tax / X Factor single VAT for charity

As is becoming a Christmas tradition, the Chancellor has announced that VAT collected on sales for the X Factor winner’s charity song will be donated to children’s charities

Tax / Plastic carrier bag charge picks up £95m

The 5p carrier bag charge on large retailers in England, introduced in 2015, has so far raised £95m for good causes, according to information supplied by the Treasury in response to a freedom of information request

1 Dec 2017

Tax / HMRC slashes costs for Making Tax Digital compliance

HMRC has revised down sharply its estimate of the transitional cost to business of implementing its flagship Making Tax Digital programme to £109 rather than £280 as originally forecast, following the decision to limit the number of businesses required to switch to digital updates and confining the first implementation to VAT reporting only

Insight / Work Christmas parties: avoiding legal problems

As we enter the festive season, firms and businesses alike will start to prepare for the annual work Christmas party however, these events can cause an array of legal issues that companies may be held accountable for, warns Tina Chandler, an employment lawyer at Wright Hassall

Tax / Requirement to notify HMRC of offshore structures a reputational risk, say stakeholders

The requirement to notify HMRC if a client is engaged in offshore tax structures carries a reputational risk and could have implications for entirely legitimate structures, a summary of consultation responses reveals

Insight / HMRC wins Goldcrest film production tax avoidance challenge

Another film scheme has fall foul of tax rules as HMRC wins the Goldcrest case at the Court of Appeal over a tax avoidance scheme involving a hedge fund manager who used a film scheme promoted by Goldcrest Pictures Ltd to avoid paying £7.5m of tax

Tax / HMRC plans overhaul of tax penalties

As part of its Making Tax Digital initiative, HMRC is consulting on ways to simplify the range of penalties, sanctions and rates of interest across the main taxes, income tax self assessment, corporation tax and VAT

Tax / Digital multinationals face £285m royalty withholding tax

Major multinationals who operate in the digital arena and are non-resident for tax purposes are likely to be caught by new rules whereby royalties realised in the UK will be subject to tax, under draft plans set out in a Treasury consultation

Tax / HMRC consults on tax changes to plant and machinery leases

Due to changes to international accounting standards on lease accounting under the forthcoming IFRS 16 Leases, HMRC has issued a consultation on proposed changes to the tax code to ensure the tax treatment of leases reflects lease accounting rules post 2019

Tax / Consultation on allowing transfers of shares and securities in venture capital trusts

A consultation is being conducted to over legislation which will allow venture capital trusts to exchange shares and securities without relying on HMRC to decide if transactions are permissible ad hoc

Insight / Accountancy fees and partner profitability show 6% growth

Partners in SME accountancy firms have seen profit per equity partner (PEP) rise by 6%, with an average payout of £141,000, according to research from NatWest

Audit / Hike in audit thresholds for community benefit societies

Audit thresholds for co-operatives and community benefit societies will double from April 2018 in a bid to reduce red tape for the smallest organisations

Insight / Blick Rothenberg in merger with Shelley Stock Hutter

Blick Rothenberg, which is part of Big Four challenger CogitalGroup, has announced the acquisition of accounting firm Shelley Stock Hutter in a move designed to strengthen the group’s presence in the owner managed business (OMB) sector

Tax / Finance Bill reforms cut burden of handling tax on employee expenses

The Finance Bill 2017-18 will contain a number of specific reforms to the taxation of employee expenses, but will stop short of a major overhaul of the current rules, after responses to a consultation earlier this year indicated that they are generally fit for purpose

Tax / Rent a Room tax relief review could hit online room booking services

As part of a review of property tax reliefs, the Treasury has released a consultation on the future of rent a room relief for individual landlords and online room booking services, which could see an overhaul of the current rules, which were introduced 25 years ago pre-internet

Tax / Claims period for pensions tax relief halved

Pension scheme administrators that reclaim tax relief face a reduced period for making claims under new legislation brought forward by the government

Tax / Finance Bill 2017-18 published

The government has published Finance Bill 2017-18 legislating for tax changes announced in last month’s Budget, which include plans to introduce a stamp duty land tax (SDLT) relief for first-time buyers, cracking down on offshore tax avoidance and the use of disguised remuneration, and increasing tax incentives for investment in innovation

Insight / Local authority fraud costs £336.2m

Local authorities detected and prevented 75,000 fraud cases in 2016/17, saving the public purse £336.2m, according to figures from CIPFA

Tax / EU sets out plans to crack down on VAT fraud

The European Commission has put forward rules designed to make the EU's VAT system more fraud-proof and to close loopholes which can lead to large-scale VAT fraud, by enabling member states to exchange information more quickly and cooperate more closely to tackle losses estimated to be over €50bn a year

Tax / Claiming R&D relief for an SME business – NEW CPD module

This month's exclusive CPD module focuses on how to calculate research and development (R&D) relief covering the various conditions, qualifying expenditure and the procedure for SME applications where there are surrenderable losses 

Insight / Company and boss convicted over auto enrolment pension failure

A bus company and its managing director have admitted deliberately avoiding giving dozens of staff workplace pensions

Tax / Tax rules for VAT on vouchers set to be simplified

HMRC is holding a technical consultation about updating the VAT legislation for vouchers to bring it up to date with the revised EU VAT directive

Tax / HMRC consults on corporate interest restrictions and IFRS 16 Leases

A consultation has been launched by HMRC on corporate interest restrictions in order to take account of the accounting changes brought about by IFRS 16 Leases

Insight / PwC Hong Kong takes first client payment in Bitcoin

PwC in Hong Kong has for the first time accepted payment in Bitcoin for its advisory services, the Big Four firm has announced

Insight / People in the news: PwC, Armstrong Watson, Baines Jewitt

This week's news of professional moves in the sector includes PwC hires a director in its data protection practice to help clients meet GDPR requirements, Armstrong Watson appoints a corporate finance director, Baines Jewitt welcomes three trainees

Insight / PwC joins with IT partner to target SME market

PwC has joined forces with specialist IT support company ramsac in a bid to improve its digital service offering to small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs)

Accounting / Legal updates: December 2017

In this month's legal updates, experts at law firm Gateley plc consider High Court ruling where dividend paymemts were not unlawful despite liquidation and and ambiguous restrictive covenant case overturned at Court of Appeal

Accounting / Accounting updates: December 2017

In this month’s roundup of developments in accounting and financial reporting, IFRS 9 adoption could wipe £2bn off Barclays' net value, FRC annual FRS 101 review defers changes to leases, IFRS 15 revenue recognition hits mobile operators

Tax / VAT updates: December 2017

Graham Elliott, VAT expert at City & Cambridge Consultancy considers legal costs disallowed in Praesto VAT case, exempt membership subscriptions, CLEU backs farmer's flat rate scheme

Tax / Employment tax updates: December 2017

Jackie Hall ACA CTA, partner at RSM on interest rate rise hits buy-to-let landlords, HMRC migrates to online only alerts, HMRC terminates post office payments, list of professional subscriptions updated

Insight / Development updates: December 2017

In the latest career development updates, pay rises for accountants below 2% over the last year, FRC publishes first detailed conflicts of interest list, investigation report not too detailed in an employment case

Audit / Audit updates: December 2017

In our monthly roundup of developments in audit and governance, monitoring group plans overhaul of global auditing standard setting system, regulator fines EY £1.8m for audit failures at Tech Data, audit tenders

Tax / Tax updates: December 2017

This month's review of tax cases and tax news including HMRC assessment powers curbed by HMRC, late non-resident CGT filing appeal allowed in Saunders, Littlewoods loses £1,25bn interest payment dispute

Tax / OECD updates guidance on country-by-country reporting

The OECD’s inclusive framework has released additional guidance designed to provide certainty to tax administrations and multinationals on the implementation of country-by-country reporting (CBCR) in several specific areas, as part of action 13 in its base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) project

30 Nov 2017

Insight / BDO confirms double-figure profits for second consecutive year

BDO has seen its underlying revenues hit £428m in the year to 30 June 2017, an increase of 5.7% compared to £405m last year, while for the second year experiencing double digit profit growth

Accounting / FRS 101: key differences between FRS 101 and IFRS - part 3

Although the purpose of FRS 101 is to mirror the recognition and measurement requirements of IFRS as far as possible, there are a few areas where FRS 101 differs. Anne Cowley ACA examines the key differences

Tax / Jim Harra made second permanent secretary at HMRC

Jim Harra has been appointed second permanent secretary at HMRC, following Edward Troup’s upcoming retirement from the tax authority

Tax / IT delays hit Ireland’s online country-by-country reporting

Ireland’s tax authority has had to extend the deadline for multinationals to submit their first country by country (CbC) reports, which are due on 31 December, into next year after delays with implementing a new online filing system

Audit / Deloitte picks up Secure Trust Bank audit from KPMG

West Midlands-based Secure Trust Bank (STB) has announced it is to appoint Deloitte as its auditor following a competitive tender process, replacing KPMG who have held the position since 2009

Accounting / Exclusive download: UK GAAP and small business accounts part 2

The latest exclusive Accountancy UK GAAP essentials guide focuses on four key accounting changes for small businesses, covering deferred tax, reduced disclosures, and how to prepare abridged and filleted accounts

Tax / Tax filing deadlines: Dec 2017- Apr 2018

The key HMRC filing deadlines from December 2017 to April 2018 including deadline for PAYE cheque payments, online CIS returns, online personal tax self-assessment returns

Audit / FRC admits HBOS failures in report

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has admitted it failed to take decisive action early enough in its investigation into KPMG’s audits of HBOS prior to the bank’s near collapse during the financial crisis, and has indicated it wants accountants in public interest roles to be subject to a similar threshold of accountability as auditors

Audit / FRC to face Treasury Committee over HBOS KPMG audit

The Treasury Committee plans to hold a hearing with chiefs at the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) to understand why the audit regulator dropped its investigation into KPMG’s role in the pre-crash HBOS audit

Insight / Job opportunity - audit & accounting technical writer, Croner-i

Thinking of a career change? Want to move out of practice? Why not join the dynamic audit and accounting technical writer team at Croner-i, based out of our fantastic new offices in central London?

Insight / Tolley Tax chair and CIOT past president Chris Jones dies

Chris Jones, 50, chairman of Tolley Tax and past president of the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT) has died suddenly leaving many across the accounting profession deeply shocked and saddened

Insight / Accountants concerned over potential Brexit outcomes

Uncertainties over the outcome of Brexit negotiations are driving a sharp fall in business confidence, according to a new members’ survey produced by ACCA, which is calling for clearer direction from government

Tax / HMRC flags up 31 January self assessment deadline

Two decades after HMRC took its first step into the digital age with the birth of electronic self assessment, the tax authority is reminding taxpayers to complete their online tax return ahead of the 31 January deadline, although the introduction of simple assessment will see fewer people pulled into the system

Tax / Tax data: CGT data, HMRC rates of interest - Dec 2017

Download the HMRC CGT indexation allowance for September 2017, RPI Index for October 2017 and HMRC rates of interest, and the current stamp duty land tax (SDLT) and land and buildings transaction tax (LBTT) rates, and more

Insight / Sash Windows loses argument over holiday pay

There may be some employers wishing that the PM had drawn her red lines regarding the EU Court of Justice (CJEU) a little sooner after the Sash Windows ruling on holiday pay entitlement, warn Croner-i HR experts