Practice & Industry

Insight / Mazars builds North America alliance

Mazars plans to expand its presence in the US and Canada with the creation of the Mazars North America Alliance in a tie-up with five major accounting firms to challenge the Big Four in the region

Insight / O'Connor: using fintech to increase practice profitability

Advances in fintech could transform the accounting profession if firms leverage the technology to help growth their practices and offer extended services to their smaller clients, explains Sam O’Connor ACA, co-founder & CEO of smart banking app Coconut

Audit / AQI 2019: Grant Thornton’s auditing branded ‘unacceptable’

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has labelled Grant Thornton’s audit quality as ‘unacceptable’, citing its failure to improve as a ‘deep concern’ after finding a quarter (26%) of all audits assessed over the past five years have required significant improvements, reports Pat Sweet

Insight / Baldwins acquires long-established West Country practices

Baldwins accountancy group, a member of CogitalGroup, has acquired two additional long-established practices as part of moves to build up its presence in the West Country

Insight / FCA tightens controls on peer-to-peer lending rules

As the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) releases its latest rule book for loan-based, peer-to-peer platforms, Kam Dhillon, principal associate at Gowling WLG, explains the regulator’s latest attempts to improve investor protection

Insight / BA faces record £183m GDPR fine

British Airways (BA) is facing a potential fine of £183.39m for infringements of the general data protection regulation (GDPR), following an extensive investigation by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) into a cyber incident the airline notified in September 2018

Insight / CMA raps Barclays over SME account ‘bundling’

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has told Barclays to improve its practices after the bank broke rules designed to protect small businesses by requiring some to open bank accounts they did not request or need, in a process known as ‘bundling’

Insight / PwC teams up with British Athletics to drive Olympic gold haul

PwC has taken a leap into the sporting world signing a partnership with British Athletics to improve how the Olympic and Paralympic world class programmes work with performance data and analytics in a bid to increase the medals haul at next year’s Olympics

Insight / CIOT and ICAS link up for joint qualification

CIOT and ICAS have signed a strategic partnership and a launched a joint qualification in accountancy and tax, which will be available from September 2019

Accounting / Domestic UK corruption risks overlooked

Unchecked conflicts of interest and austerity mean corruption risks for UK businesses are increasing, but these dangers are being overlooked because of a focus on overseas bribery cases, warns Fraud Advisory Panel (FAP)

Audit / Deloitte faces £6.5m fine over Serco Geografix audit failures

Deloitte has been fined £6.5m by the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) over its auditing of Serco Geografix Ltd, the company which has recently settled fraud and false accounting charges under a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) with the Serious Fraud Office (SFO)

Insight / Artificial intelligence cannot replace professional judgment for auditors

The use of artificial intelligence (AI) to replace human intervention for auditing processes and financial transactions will not remove the need for professional judgment, ICAEW warns

Accounting / SFO fines Serco £19m over fraud and false accounting

Outsourcing giant Serco Group is set to pay £23m including costs under a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) with the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) over fraud and false accounting charges

Insight / Haysmacintyre names Jeremy Beard as managing partner

Haysmacintyre has appointed Jeremy Beard as the new managing partner of the firm, ranked at number 26 in the Accountancy Daily 2019 league table of firms with a revenue of £28.8m

Insight / Pension trustee system needs to be overhauled

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) is consulting on the future of trusteeship in a bid to raise standards and reduce the number of poorly governed pension schemes