Regaining Public Trust Our First Priority

BY F. G. HAUGH

The ink of President Bush’s signature, signing the Sarbanes-Oxley legislation into law, is barely dry, and the accounting profession is looking at and writing articles about opportunities to market nonaudit services (“ Period of Adjustment JofA , Feb.03, page 43).

Has it not learned anything from the recent problems with the Enrons of the world, caused, at least in part, by accounting firms focusing on the marketing of other services?

As a profession, we CPAs have a credibility problem about where our loyalties lie. It is all too obvious the public has lost confidence in our ability to provide reliable attest services. Is it not time to devote 100% of our efforts to reestablishing our priorities and their trust?

Let’s forget the marketing of nonaudit services until we can clearly demonstrate an ability to consistently and reliably provide the core services that brought the CPA profession to prominence.

Those who rely on our opinions need to believe the accounting profession is focused on regaining their trust in our ability to provide an opinion through an audit that is truly objective and free of even the appearance that we lack independence.

F. G. Haugh, CPA
Irving, Texas

SPONSORED REPORT

Revenue recognition: A complex effort

Implementing the new standard requires careful judgment. Learn how to make significant accounting judgments and document them and collaborate with peers for consistent application.

TECHNOLOGY Q&A

How to create maps in Excel 2016

Microsoft Excel 2016 has two new mapping capabilities. J. Carlton Collins, CPA, demonstrates how to make masterful 2D and 3D maps in Excel 2016.

QUIZ

News quiz: Economy and health care changes top CPAs’ list

CPA decision-makers’ economic outlook and the House Republicans’ proposed tax changes as part of replacing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act received attention recently. See how much you know with this short quiz.