Journal of Accountancy

A monthly publication of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants focusing on the latest news and developments related to the field of accounting, and written for CPAs and other accounting professionals.

Articles from November

A New Approach to Regulating Small Banks
CPAs gain an opportunity to provide a new assurance service. Bank regulators have proposed a new external audit policy for banks and thrifts with less than $500 million in assets. These smaller institutions, known as community banks, have not been...
Changes for FASB No. 65
Although the FASB exposed its proposed mortgage amendment for only 45 days, it still received a number of helpful suggestions from the accounting community, some of which were incorporated in the recently released final document. FASB Statement no....
Deferred Like-Kind Exchanges
If a taxpayer wants to exchange business or investment property tax-free under the IRC section 1031 like-kind exchange rules, when must he or she receive the replacement property? Section 1031 establishes two conditions a taxpayer must meet to qualify...
F.Y.I
Scholar-in-Residence * The SEC named Joseph H. Godwin to serve as academic accounting fellow in the Office of the Chief Accountant for a one-year term that started in August. Godwin is chairman of the Department of Accounting and Taxation at the...
Letters
On SAS 85 It isn't often that an article in the Journal of Accountancy induces a "laughing-out-loud reaction," but one in the March 1998 issue did just that. There, in "Talking With the Auditor" (page 63), the authors provide an exegetic analysis...
Line Items
Company Safe on Home-Expense Deductions * To encourage employee transfers, a computer manufacturer engaged the services of a relocation company to buy relocated employees' residences. A transferred employee could then buy a replacement home before...
Matchmaker, Matchmaker, Find Me a Bank!
How to choose the best one for your small business client. Banks and their customers get along to varying degrees. Some relationships resemble long-standing and loving marriages like that of Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward. Others are more the Bruce...
Memoirs of a CPA?
Most people wouldn't think the life story of a CPA would make for interesting reading. Then again, most people might just be wrong. Harvey S. Wineberg's Thanks for Your Trust: Memories of an Untamed Accountant (Bonus Books, Inc., $24.95) gives readers...
Middle-Class Family Falls Victim to AMT
The alternative minimum tax (AMT) is a parallel tax system (calculated separately from regular taxes) designed to ensure that wealthy taxpayers with substantial tax preference items are subject to some income tax liability. A recent Tax Court case,...
Ms. Smith Goes to Washington
Capitol Hill may be the hunting ground of big business and the lobbyists they hire, but a small-firm CPA found a way to make herself--and her small business clients--heard in Washington. Sandra Abalos, sole partner of a six-person firm in Phoenix,...
New Regulations for a New World
A Uniform Accountancy Act for the next generation. It is no longer a question of whether changes to the regulation of the accounting profession will occur; it is a question of when, how and who will control these changes. NASBA and the AICPA are...
New Rules for Employee - Independent Contractor Controversies
Tax Court access for worker classification disputes. For many years, a central issue in the employer-IRS employment tax controversy was the status of some workers. There were questions about whether particular individuals were employees (in which...
Numerology for Accountants
Do financial statements universally "favor" some numbers over others? The idea seems to defy logic. In a random string of numbers pulled from a company's books, each digit, 1-9, would seem to have on chance in nine of starting a given number. But according...
Official Releases
FASB No. 133 ... SAS No. 87 Space considerations prevent publishing here the appendices to FASB Statement no. 133. Since the appendices often are important to understanding FASB statements, readers are advised to obtain complete copies. For additional...
Plug-In to CPE
The training of tomorrow is available today. Someone is offering a CPE course in Wyoming ranch country. And in Chicago's O'Hare Airport. And in San Francisco's St. Francis Hotel. Traditional courses in unusual places? No. Welcome to online CPE--with...
Put Your Trust in Trustees
CPAs should be aware of important changes in trustee accountability. The Uniform Laws Commission (see Exhibit 1) has introduced two new model statutes that change the statutory responsibilities of trustees and fiduciaries. The first is the Uniform...
Rethinking Internal Audits
The steps to success in lowering Costs and boosting quality. What are the keys to running a lean, proactive internal audit department? At Tosco, a petroleum refining and marketing company, Norman Marks, general auditor, has developed an approach...
Spreadsheet Safety
Designing the perfect file. In recent years, spreadsheets have taken on a role far more important than they had in the pre-computer days. Because of spreadsheet applications' power, speed and adaptability, today's financial managers rely heavily...
Talking the Talk Y2K
What needs to done and who knows how to do it are still valid questions about the year 2000 issue. And Congress is taking a step toward these solutions with a bill, HR 4455, introduced by Congressman David Dreier R-Calif.). The proposed Year 2000 Readiness...
Task Force Makes GST Proposal
The Multi-Professional Organization Allocation Task Force (which includes members of the AICPA, the American Bankers Association, the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and several bar associations) recently submitted a proposal to Congress...
The Decision on Derivatives
FASB Statement no. 133 establishes comprehensive accounting requirements. Over the years, FASB has had difficulty keeping pace with the financial innovations companies use to manage or hedge the risk exposure from rapidly changing global financial...