Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

SSAE No. 8: The Marketing Issues

Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

SSAE No. 8: The Marketing Issues

Article excerpt

A public company can choose which firm will perform its annual financial statement audit, but it can't choose to skip an audit altogether. As a result, auditors may have marketed their firms but usually not the service itself because they didn't have to "sell" the audit--the SEC has required audits of public companies for over half a century. Today, as auditors expand their services into voluntary areas, moving beyond the traditional financial statement audit, they will have to answer this question from their clients: "If the SEC doesn't require this, what's in it for us?"

The Journal spoke with James S. Gerson, ASB vice-chairman, about some of the marketing problems that may crop up with engagements under the new SSAE no. 8, Management's Discussion and Analysis. "In a nutshell, SSAE no. 8 sets ground rules for how auditors might deal with an emerging range of information," he said. "But will companies be anxious to spend money to gain such assurance? The Financial Executives Institute, in its comment letter, said it would not object to SSAE no. …

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