Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

"Pass the Aspirin"

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

"Pass the Aspirin"

Article excerpt

THE HEADACHE

There has been controversy between banks and their public accounting firms over the last year or more, to put it mildly. How do things stand between your bank and your CPA firm? Have you had to reassign any work formerly clone by that firm to a different one? Have you decided to move your entire accounting relationship to a different firm?

REMEDY 1

Jackie DeLaney, president and CEO, Sun West Bank, $283.9 million in assets, Las Vegas, Nev.

Our only issue (other than price, of course--ha!) with our CPA firm [Editor: deleted for privacy's sake] has to do with the footnotes and disclosures in our upcoming 2004 audit. As a matter of record, Sun West Bank is just over six years aid and a Subchapter-S bank.

Here's what we were told by our partner at the firm. He informed us that they will no longer provide the footnotes/disclosures to our audited financial statements, but that the firm would provide us with a template so that we could do our own. Their comment was that these are our statements, so we should be providing the wording and not them.

I found this to be another pass the buck sort of thing, as it appears they do not want to be responsible or liable for the information. They did say they would took at the information and Let us know if the information is not correct.

This makes me wonder, so, what is the purpose of this or even the audit if the reader is not somewhat assured that the accounting auditors have done their job and are providing the footnotes as some form of assurance to the disclosures? I mean, if the footnotes are our responsibility, why not leave some out? We certainly would not intentionally do that, but who is to say others would not? I am curious if other CPA firms are taking this same position and if other banks renegotiated their contracts, since the value of the audit seems to be diminished somewhat. …

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