A semiannual AICPA survey of CPAs serving as senior corporate executives revealed they have a mostly favorable outlook for the U.S. economy in 2006 ( ). Sixty percent of respondents believed that the economy will continue to improve, and 74% of them had high hopes for their own organization’s prospects over the next six months.

The IRS again is holding CPE-eligible tax forums to keep tax professionals up-to-date on its policies and programs ( ). The topics to be addressed include form 990, which the IRS and most state agencies use to regulate tax-exempt organizations, the IRS e-file program, practitioner case resolution, the IRS Oversight Board and the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System. The tax forums will be held in Anaheim, Calif. (June 27–29), Chicago (July 11–13), Atlanta (July 25–27), Orlando, Fla. (Aug. 1–3), Las Vegas (Aug. 22–24) and New York (August 29–31).

The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board also is administering another series of public forums—on auditing in the small business environment ( ). Small firms registered with the PCAOB are invited to attend a one-day session on the board’s inspection process, the impact of new auditing standards and other subjects. This series of public forums began in January; the remaining sessions will take place in San Antonio (May 2 and 3), Seattle (June 21), Boston (Sept. 8), Philadelphia (Oct. 16), New York (Nov. 7 and 8) and Chicago (Dec. 7).

Karen Botvin, CPA, a senior manager in the Vanguard Group’s Investor Tax Services office in Malverne, N.Y.; Holly Carlin, CPA, the owner of a small firm in Park City, Utah; and Erica Dinner, CPA, an assistant director of tax information reporting in the Hartford Life Insurance Company’s Simsbury, Conn., office were selected to serve three-year terms on the IRS’s Information Reporting Advisory Committee (,,id=98158,00.html ). Members of the committee discuss tax administration issues with IRS officials and make recommendations to promote equitable treatment of all taxpayers.

The AICPA’s Private Companies Practice Section (PCPS) is temporarily offering free access to the PCPS Firm Practice Center ( ), where practitioners can view articles, tools and technical updates that normally are available only to employees of PCPS member firms. Nonmember firms that want to access this material after May 15, 2006, can apply for membership at or by calling 800-CPA-FIRM.

The Accounting and Audit Policy Committee (AAPC) of the Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board (FASAB) is looking for volunteers to serve on its Inter-Entity Cost Implementation Task Force. The AAPC is reestablishing this task force to develop implementation guidance for Statement of Federal Financial Accounting Standards 30, Inter-Entity Cost Implementation Amending SFFAS 4, Managerial Cost Accounting Standards and Concepts. The AAPC also is looking for volunteers to serve on a task force established to assist in a guidance project on heritage assets and stewardship land. For information, contact FASAB Assistant Director Monica Valentine at or 202-512-7362.


Year-end tax planning and what’s new for 2016

Practitioners need to consider several tax planning opportunities to review with their clients before the end of the year. This report offers strategies for individuals and businesses, as well as recent federal tax law changes affecting this year’s tax returns.


News quiz: Retirement planning, tax practice, and fraud risk

Recent reports focused on a survey that gauges the worries about retirement among CPA financial planners’ clients, a suit that affects tax practitioners, and a guide that offers advice on fraud risk. See how much you know with this short quiz.


Bolster your data defenses

As you weather the dog days of summer, it’s a good time to make sure your cybersecurity structure can stand up to the heat of external and internal threats. Here are six steps to help shore up your systems.