Audit Committee Brief

A periodic publication that provides audit committee members with recommendations, overviews of corporate governance resources, regulatory and legislative environment outlooks, and technical updates.

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September 2021

  • CFO Signals™: 3Q 2021
  • Finance 2025 revisited
  • Finance team adapts to be ready for any outcome
  • CAQ publishes ESG reporting trends
  • CAQ outlines accounting and auditing requirements for climate-related risks
  • Complete survey about the role of the audit committee in overseeing climate change risk
  • Considerations in divesting a carveout to a SPAC
  • Board Practices Quarterly: The outspoken corporation
  • On the board’s agenda | US: Business not as usual—How the Breakthrough Manifesto and Business Chemistry® can help boards navigate uncertainty


August 2021

  • CAQ publication examines external auditor’s responsibilities with respect to illegal acts
  • CFOs gear up for ESG reporting requirements
  • SEC chair issues statement on investor protection related to developments in China
  • SEC approves NASDAQ’s proposed rule regarding board diversity

July 2021

  • Increased demand for ESG attestation
  • Role of internal audit in ESG reporting
  • Financial transformations and seven key risk areas
  • 10 frequently asked questions for IPO readiness
  • The CAQ releases an alert on amendments to SEC independence rules

June 2021

  • Board Practices Quarterly: Cyber oversight
  • Missing Pieces Report: The Board Diversity Census of Women and Minorities on Fortune 500 Boards, 6th edition
  • How ESG affects accounting and financial reporting
  • PCAOB updates research on data and technology for preparers and auditors
  • Climate and ESG policy and market developments
  • Internal auditors adapt to change resulting from innovation and digitization
  • A cloud security controls framework
  • The PCAOB proposes a framework for HFCAA determinations
  • SEC announces regulatory agenda

May 2021

  • CFOs identify FP&A and management reporting for improvement
  • Creating long-term value with climate disclosures
  • On the board’s agenda | US: Incorporating ESG measures into executive compensation plans
  • On the board’s agenda | US: Trust ꟷ A critical asset
  • The CAQ releases an alert on auditing SPAC transactions
  • The PCAOB seeks new adviser nominations

April 2021

  • On the Radar
  • The Strategic Audit Committee: Navigating 2021
  • The CAQ releases an overview of ESG reporting and assurance
  • Artificial intelligence and machine learning to mitigate fraud risk
  • PCAOB staff outlook for 2021 inspections and CAQ guide to PCAOB inspections
  • The CAQ updates its External Auditor Assessment Tool
  • FASB staff releases a paper on ESG and accounting standards
  • ERP-enabled finance function can transform business
  • The PCAOB approves formation of a new standards advisory group
  • The SEC requests public input on climate-related and other ESG disclosures

March 2021

  • The CAQ and AICPA release a new roadmap for ESG reporting and attestation
  • Board Practices Quarterly: 2021 boardroom agenda
  • FERF releases annual report of public company audit fees
  • IFRS Foundation takes steps toward establishing global sustainability standards
  • Considerations for investing in digital assets
  • The SEC increases focus on climate-related disclosure

February 2021

  • On the audit committee’s agenda | The strategic audit committee: Navigating 2021
  • PCAOB conversations with audit committee chairs
  • Whistleblowing in the wake of COVID-19
  • Heads Up | Five steps to improve disclosures for investors
  • BlackRock’s CEO releases annual letter
  • On the board’s agenda | US: Cyber―New challenges in a COVID-19–disrupted world
  • On the board’s agenda | US: Get ready—How boards can prepare for activism’s next wave

January 2021

  • FEI |The Shifting Role of The Audit Committee in Working with Management to Effectively Oversee Risk
  • On the audit committee’s agenda | Year-end accounting and financial reporting considerations: Questions for audit committees to consider
  • Quarterly Accounting Roundup: Year in Review – 2020
  • Common themes in the new Anti-Fraud Collaboration report
  • PCAOB’s focus areas for 2021 inspections will consider the impact of COVID-19
  • On the board’s agenda | US: The 2021 boardroom agenda—Never let a good crisis go to waste (and more)
  • SEC plans to implement the Holding Foreign Companies Accountable Act

December 2020

  • On the audit committee’s agenda | Year-end accounting and financial reporting considerations: Questions for audit committees to consider
  • On the board’s agenda | US: Time to act–Applying discretion to outstanding incentive awards in the era of COVID-19
  • AICPA conference focusses on regulatory developments
  • The CFO guide to data management strategy using enterprise service delivery
  • Nasdaq proposes mandatory board-diversity for listed companies
  • SASB and IIRC merger targets simplified sustainability disclosures
  • The PCAOB aligns auditor independence requirements with the SEC
  • SEC amends rule on MD&A and related financial disclosures
  • Evolution of human capital management disclosures in light of Regulation S-K

November 2020

  • On the audit committee’s agenda: Defining the Role of the Audit Committee in Overseeing ESG
  • CFO Journal: Current challenges and priorities for audit committees
  • The CAQ releases The Role of Auditors in Company-Prepared Cybersecurity Information: Present and Future
  • The PCAOB releases an interim analysis of the impact of CAM requirements
  • The PCAOB releases resource for audit committees on new audit requirements
  • SEC adopts amendments to auditor independence rules
  • SEC modernizes the exempt offering framework

October 2020

  • On the audit committee’s agenda: Audit committee challenges and priorities in the upcoming quarter and beyond
  • Audit committee expectations of internal audit
  • The CAQ releases 2020 Audit Committee Transparency Barometer
  • The CAQ releases The Role of Auditors in Non-GAAP Financial Measures and Key Performance Indicators: Present and Future
  • The impact of COVID-19 on the quality of disclosures
  • Skepticism is critical in assessing the potential for fraud
  • Recent developments in ESG reporting and disclosures
  • PCAOB releases a staff update with 2019 inspection insights
October 2020

September 2020

  • COVID-19-related financial reporting trends
  • The PCAOB extends inspection window to better assess the impact of the coronavirus on audit quality
  • On the board’s agenda | US: The workforce takes center stage—The board’s evolving role
  • SEC adopts amendments to Regulation S-K
September 2020

August 2020

  • PCAOB in conversation with audit committee chairs
  • Effective stakeholder communications during the pandemic
  • On the board’s agenda | US: Leadership in turbulent times: Better foresight, better choices
  • CECL disclosure observations on first-quarter filings
  • SEC adopts amendments concerning proxy voting

July 2020—Special Edition

Audit committee priorities in the current quarter and beyond

Financial reporting during the first quarter of the coronavirus disease 2019 (“COVID-19”) pandemic was challenging for most companies. Reporting for the second quarter promises to be even more so given the prolonged impact of the pandemic. As companies continue to grapple with the implications of managing operations remotely, supplier disruptions, government assistance, and more, audit committee oversight will be critical to applying lessons learned thus far to the current quarter. Continued challenges around financial reporting, risk oversight, critical audit matters (“CAMs”), and compliance and fraud risk could impact the audit committee’s focus. Therefore, it may be an opportune time for audit committees to reassess their processes and practices to confirm they support the current and future demands of the committee.

This special edition of the Audit Committee Brief discusses the audit committee’s role in overseeing financial reporting and risk and includes questions to consider. It also explores how audit committees have shifted their processes to operate effectively in this environment.

July 2020

  • Special Edition Audit Committee Brief: Audit committee priorities in the current quarter and beyond
  • On the board’s agenda | US: ESG and corporate purpose in a disrupted world
  • CAQ interviews the SEC chief accountant
  • Risks to consider for upcoming audits
  • Recent SEC statements on the impact of COVID-19

June 2020

  • COVID-19-related financial reporting challenges
  • Webcast: Audit committee priorities during times of disruption
  • PCAOB inspection reports redesigned to enhance readability and transparency
  • Guidelines for audit committees during COVID-19
  • Audits involving cryptoassets
  • On the board’s agenda | US: What the board needs to know about blockchain technology
  • SEC rule improves disclosures for business acquisitions and dispositions

May 2020

  • COVID-19 resources site keeps business leaders informed
  • Webcast: Audit committee priorities during times of disruption
  • Report details audit committee disclosures of critical audit matters
  • Changes made to the use of XBRL in digital financial reporting
  • The SEC and PCAOB emphasize risk disclosures for companies in emerging markets
  • PCAOB requests comment on CAMs
  • FASB provides guidance on cash flow hedge accounting during pandemic

April 2020 – Special edition

Accounting and financial reporting considerations for audit committees regarding COVID-19

The impact of COVID-19 can be profound as companies face a variety of risks while navigating through shifting priorities and business activities. During these unprecedented times, it’s imperative that audit committees work closely with management to understand these risks and to oversee the impact they may have on financial statements and related reporting.  

This special edition Audit Committee Brief focuses on the accounting and financial reporting implications that may result from the pandemic and includes audit committee considerations, as well as questions they can ask management, in the following areas:

  • SEC relief
  • Financial reporting and disclosure consideration
  • Accounting implications
  • Internal control over financial reporting

April 2020

  • Special Edition Audit Committee Brief: Accounting and financial reporting considerations for audit committees regarding COVID-19
  • Highlights of the CARES Act
  • PCAOB highlights reminders to assist auditors
  • CAQ releases a resource guide on audit and audit committee considerations
  • Assessing corporate culture to manage risk and avert misconduct
  • SEC’s chairman Jay Clayton and director William Hinman emphasize the importance of disclosure
  • SEC expands qualifications for nonaccelerated filer status
  • FASB decides to defer certain effective dates and provides guidance on COVID-19

March 2020

  • Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) developments, impact, and updates
  • On the board’s agenda | The atmosphere for climate-change disclosure
  • Restatements are declining while audit quality is improving
  • Investor perspectives and decisions are evolving
  • Regulators and Big Four accounting firms discuss audit quality in emerging markets and coronavirus
  • SEC proposes amendments to the exempt offering framework

February 2020

  • The International Business Council discusses Big Four reporting sustainability at the World Economic Forum
  • Climate-driven financial risks are hard to ignore
  • BlackRock and State Street CEOs release letters on sustainability
  • SEC proposes rule to modernize MD&A and related financial disclosure requirements

January 2020

  • On the board’s agenda | US: The strategic audit committee: A 2020 preview
  • Governing through regulatory change
  • SEC leaders discuss topics for audit committee focus in the new year
  • PCAOB shares perspectives from audit committee chairs
  • AICPA conference focuses on regulatory developments
  • CII explores initial CAM disclosures
  • PCAOB shines a light on critical audit matters
  • How auditors play a role in company-prepared information
  • PCAOB seeks input on revising quality control standards
  • SEC proposes amendments to the auditor independence framework
January 2020

November 2019

  • Breakdown of CAM disclosures and topics
  • CAQ releases 2019 audit committee transparency barometer
  • Understanding risk in a dynamic world
  • On the board’s agenda | US: The front line of ESG disclosure – The board’s role
  • Changing board diversity around the world
  • On the board’s agenda | US: Outside the four walls – The board’s role in extended enterprise management
  • SEC proposes changes to shareholder proposal rule
  • SEC proposes to improve disclosure of proxy voting advisers
November 2019

October 2019

  • Growing tech fluency on the board
  • Sustainability disclosure trends
  • CAQ releases survey results on investor confidence
  • CAM lessons from initial filings
  • Impact of non-audit services on audit quality
  • Fifteen years of Sarbanes-Oxley
  • SEC expands the “test-the-waters” rule to all issuers

September 2019

  • On the board's agenda | Board oversight of corporate compliance: Is it time for a refresh?
  • Results of initial CAMs filings
  • IFAC recommends leading practices for audit committees
  • SEC guidance for proxy voting responsibilities
  • PCAOB’s inspection report for audits of brokers and dealers
  • PCAOB guidance on auditing estimates and working with specialists

August 2019

  • Assessing the impact of LIBOR’s discontinuation
  • Considerations in using non-GAAP accounting
  • AAERs trends and consequences
  • FASB offers implementation relief to smaller companies
  • SEC looks to update Regulation S-K disclosures

July 2019

  • Audit committee disclosure in proxy statements—2019 trends
  • CAM insights for audit committees
  • Helping investors understand CAMs
  • Investors’ role in improving cybersecurity
  • Impacts of lease disclosures under new standards
  • Understanding the effects of the credit impairment model outside of banking

June 2019

  • Critical audit matters and the board
  • Risks of emerging technologies and the auditor’s focus
  • Investigations into ICFR weaknesses is a risk factor for SEC enforcement
  • SEC seeks to balance reporting requirements with protecting investors
  • PCAOB staff guidance for communication with audit committees regarding independence
  • PCAOB staff guidance on CAM implementation

May 2019

  • Audit committee guidance on implementation of critical audit matters
  • SEC’s chief accountant on the importance of the audit committee
  • The impact of cybersecurity on financial reporting and the role of auditors
  • Guide to internal control over financial reporting
  • Helping audit committees prepare for the new credit losses standard
  • Fraud risk management and internal audit
  • SEC proposes improved disclosures of business acquisitions and dispositions
  • SEC proposes to amend accelerated filer and large accelerated filer definitions
  • Observations from the PCAOB’s 2018 inspections

April 2019

  • On the board’s agenda | What to expect from auditor reporting of critical audit matters
  • The Center for Audit Quality updates its External Auditor Assessment Tool
  • A look at innovation in internal audit
  • Board Practices Report: Common threads across boardrooms
  • Lease accounting implementation rates and tips for public and private companies
  • PCAOB issues new reporting guidance on CAMs
  • SEC issues a final rule on some Regulation S-K requirements
  • SEC feedback overview on implementation of ASC 606

March 2019

  • PCAOB publishes 2019 audit committee inspections outlook
  • Survey indicates boards not corroborating risk information enough
  • Study indicates linkage between financial restatements and long-term capital market consequences
  • Crisis resilience and the board—Taking risk oversight to the next level
  • FASB proposes an accounting standards update on share-based payments

February 2019

  • Quarterly accounting roundup: Year in review—2018
  • Six tips for developing CAM disclosures
  • A roadmap to non-GAAP financial measures—2019 edition
  • Leading practices for audit committees is focus of international report
  • SEC seeks input on quarterly reports and earnings releases
  • Audit & Assurance Update—New PCAOB Standard for Accounting Estimates

December 2018

  • Emerging technologies: An oversight tool for audit committees
  • Highlights of the 2018 AICPA conference on current SEC and PCAOB developments
  • 2019 SEC and other regulatory priorities
  • Lessons learned and questions to consider on critical audit matters
  • Overseeing internal audit: The role of the audit committee
  • SEC chair outlines 2019 regulatory priorities
  • PCAOB standing advisory group meeting summary
  • California Consumer Privacy Act: Thought GDPR readiness was tough?

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November 2018

  • CAQ releases 2018 audit committee transparency barometer
  • PCAOB enhanced audit committee engagement
  • Cyber threat considerations related to the implementation of internal accounting controls
  • Revenue recognition implementation far from over
  • Some answers to lease transition questions
  • FASB discusses improvements to guidance on credit losses

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October 2018

  • The CFO and the Audit Committee: A View From
    Both Sides
  • Investors have much confidence in independent
    audit committees, says survey
  • Risk Oversight and the Role of the Board
  • Using the AICPA’s Cybersecurity Framework to Convey Cyber Preparedness
  • Quarterly Accounting Roundup: Third quarter—2018
  • Study notes half of internal audit processes lack cyber risk assessment
  • SEC comments reflect registrants’ efforts to implement ASC 606
  • SEC clarifies interim stockholders’ equity and effective date requirements

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September 2018

  • SEC issues final rule to update and simplify disclosure requirements
  • Readiness for the new leases standards
  • Frequently asked questions about tax reform
  • Quarterly earnings reports at center of debate
  • Updated guidance on the auditor's report
  • FASB amends guidance on cloud computing arrangements
  • FASB amends disclosure of fair-value measurements

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August 2018

  • Center for Audit Quality publishes resource on critical audit matters
  • SEC to host roundtable on the proxy process
  • Research shows that boards can foster an ethical culture
  • Complying with new accounting standards with consistency
  • PCAOB seeks comment on its strategic plan
  • SEC proposes disclosure simplification and relief related to guarantors and collateralizations of securities
  • FASB releases targeted improvements to ASC 842
  • Predictive sensing in a volatile world: The rise of digital intel

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July 2018

  • On the board’s agenda: Audit committee disclosure in proxy statements—2018 trends
  • ASC 606 is here—How do your revenue disclosures stack up?
  • SEC expands eligibility for “smaller reporting company” classification
  • SEC proposes amendments to whistleblower rules
  • FASB simplifies the accounting for share-based payment arrangements with nonemployees
  • Quarterly Accounting Roundup: Second quarter—2018

June 2018

  • A summary of the PCAOB’s Standing Advisory Group June meeting
  • SEC chief accountant discusses financial reporting
  • PCAOB transitions for the future
  • On the board’s agenda: Industry 4.0
  • FASB discusses improvements to related-party guidance for variable interest entities

May 2018

  • Cybersecurity risk management oversight: A tool for board members
  • Boards: Understand the rules for ethics and compliance oversight
  • SEC chief accountant addresses financial reporting conference
  • Global report seeks input on good practices for audit committees supporting audit quality
  • What private companies should know about the new revenue recognition standard
  • SEC publishes graphs illustrating financial reporting structure for public issuers

April 2018

  • Deloitte updates its Audit Committee Resource Guide
  • Preparing for the Leases Accounting Standard: A Tool for Audit Committees
  • Talking to leaders, boards and investors about tax reform
  • Corporate culture risk and the board
  • SEC staff updates C&DIs on non-GAAP financial measures
  • A discussion on hedge accounting

March 2018

  • CAQ releases roadmap for audit committees on Non-GAAP measures
  • In the Spirit of Full Cybersecurity Disclosure
  • Justifying judgment when recognizing revenue
  • Tax and accounting highlights: Limitations on excessive employee compensation
  • FASB discusses feedback on proposed targeted improvements to the new leasing standard
  • FASB issues proposed ASU on cloud computing arrangements

February 2018

  • Year in review—2017
  • Observations by early adopters of the new revenue standard
  • Valuation allowance considerations related to tax reform
  • The Auditor of the Future isn’t who you think
  • FASB proposes income tax guidance related to new tax reform law
  • FASB discusses improvements to guidance on leases

January 2018

This issue revisits 2017 developments that should remain points of focus for audit committees in the new year:

  • Tax reform
  • The PCAOB’s new auditor reporting model
  • Adoption of the new GAAP standards
    • Leasing standard, ASU 2016-02
    • Revenue standard, ASC 606
    • Financial instruments – credit losses, ASU 2016-13
  • Risk oversight
  • Increased audit committee disclosure

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