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 Vol. 182, No. 4, October

401(k)s Are Now Money in the Bank
The Department of Labor drastically shortened the period employers may hold employees' 401 (k) contributions before investing them. Currently employers have 90 days, but the new rule, which takes effect February 3, 1997, will require deposit within...
Allen Calls for a Restructured GASB
Tom L. Allen, chairman of the Governmental Accounting Standards Board, said he has recommended a change in the composition and size of the GASB. Allen told attendees at the American Institute of CPAs Annual Accounting and Auditing Update Conference...
A Road Map for Developing New Clients
The CPA's mantra: How can I be of service to this client? For any practice to survive and prosper, it is imperative that the professionals bring in new business. Often, CPAs who are assigned the responsibility to head up new business development...
Auditors' Reports
This checklist is excerpted from the American Institute of CPAs Financial Statement Preparation Manual. It was developed as a nonauthoritative practice aid and is to be used for OCBOA (other comprehensive basis of accounting) engagements. The checklist...
Avoid the Employment Tax Delinquency Trap
The IRS can assert personal liability for some withholding taxes. In today's economy, more and more companies find themselves trying to get by on reduced revenues and slim operating margins. When poor business conditions cause revenues to dwindle,...
Bowsher Says Goodbye, Pleased Federal Government Is More Accountable
Charles A. Bowsher, U.S. comptroller general and head of the General Accounting Office, has retired after 15 years of service during which he played a major role in strengthening governmental financial management. Under Bowsher's leadership, the GAO...
California Poised to Vote on Securities Law Initiative
An initiative that will appear on the November 1996 election ballot in California known as the Retirement Savings and Consumer Protection Act, or proposition 211, could have far-reaching effects on all U.S. publicly traded companies and their CPA firms....
Changing Hats
How a retired CPA became an entrepreneur in one difficult, giant step. When Fred Gage announced his plans to retire, at age 61, from the CPA firm he helped found, little did he know that he was about to launch a new career as an entrepreneur. And...
Commerce Department Operates Online Data Business
Although there is a vast amount of information available on the Internet, not all of it is reliable. However, since 1985 the Department of Commerce has been providing authoritative business, economic and trade information. STAT-USA, at http://www.statusa.gov,...
Courts Rule in Different Directions on Class Actions against Accountants
With the enactment of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, the plaintiffs' bar wall now consider filing securities cases in state courts to circumvent the federal restrictions imposed on plaintiffs by the reform act. The following...
Decedent's Final Income Tax Returns
Practical planning tips for the will's executor or the estate's administrator. hen an individual dies, someone usually is selected to act as his or her personal representative, either as an executor (if named in the decedent's will) or an administrator...
Deducting Personal Interest
The Tax Reform Act (TRA) of 1986 put an end to the deductibility of personal interest, except for a few exceptions, such as investment and mortgage interest. The deduction of business-related interest generally has not been a problem for unincorporated...
FASB 125 Changes Transfer Accounting
The Financial Accounting Standards Board has issued Statement no. 125, Accounting for Transfers and Servicing of Financial Assets and Extinguishments of Liabilities, which changes and clarifies the differences between secured borrowings and sales....
How to Spot Fraud
Putting a squeeze on theft. While there is no sure-fire way to eliminate fraud and if there were, the cost probably would be prohibitive with proper attention by management it can be minimized. This article explores the various ways CPAs in industry...
IFAC Revises Ethics Code
The International Federation of Accountants has revised its Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants. The revisions to the IFAC code, which was first published in 1990, are the result of discussions held at the IFAC ethics forum in Paris, France,...
IRS, Forced to Operate with Less, to See a Decline in Service
Both the House and the Senate have approved drastic cuts in the Internal Revenue Service's 1997 budget. President Bill Clinton's request for approximately $8.1 billion for the IRS in 1997 is likely to be shaved by between $1 billion and $1.4 billion...
Management or Mismanagement?
How CPAs can help spot when client investments are being mishandled. Certain investment management problems are difficult to overlook. The recent derivatives crisis affected both big and small investors and received considerable media attention....
New Millennium Is Cause for Concern
CPAs have seen the future and it has problems. The year 2000 is proving a headache for the Financial Accounting Standards Board, the auditing standards board, the Internal Revenue Service and a lot of anxious mainframe computer users. The problem...
Small Firms Can Do Big Business Online
The Internet is an inexpensive gateway for novel MCS engagements. John E Lacher, CPA, is a sole practitioner who devotes his entire practice to management consulting. His clients range from other CPAs to small businesses to a Fortune 1000 company,...
Stock Options
Many companies allow their employees to exercise stock options by tendering previously owned shares and cash in exchange for new shares. In private letter ruling 9629028, a corporation with an incentive stock option (ISO) plan and a nonqualified stock...
Taxpayer Bill of Rights 2 Is Now Law
President Clinton signed into law a bill that will provide administrative relief to taxpayers who must deal with the Internal Revenue Service. The Taxpayer Bill of Rights 2 (HR 2337), heralded as a victory for taxpayers, was widely supported by both...
The Elusive Holy Grail
While many of the available products are useful even essential none can replace the knowledge and experience of the practitioner. If you're planning to get into personal financial planning, don't expect to find the holy graff the profession's jargon...
The First Century of the CPA
Public accounting was one product of the forces that transformed the United States in the late 19th century. The country moved from a primarily rural and agricultural society to one that was urban and industrial. Although the increased importance of...
The Goods
Keeping track of time and money. CUSTOMIZABLE TIME AND BILLING The Network Systems new time and billing software for Windows does more than just act as a time and billing administrator. It performs a host of practice management functions including,...
The Warning Signs of Fraudulent Financial Reporting
What do auditors believe are the best ways to spot fraud? One frequently cited cause of audit failure is audit teams' lack of awareness of the warning signs of fraud. If auditors better understood these signs and applied professional skepticism,...
Your Estate: Which Country Taxes What?
Practice expansion: estate and gift taxation across international borders. While most CPAs recognize the international aspects of income tax compliance, it's not unusual for little or no attention to be paid to the transfer tax implications of being...
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