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This paper aims to examine the recent evolution of the regulation of statutory auditing since the passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 in the USA by comparing the…
This paper aims to examine the recent evolution of the regulation of statutory auditing since the passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 in the USA by comparing the regulatory structures for auditing in the USA, France and Canada.
Using publicly available documents, the paper seeks to understand how the regulatory structures for statutory auditing have changed in the period since the passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. The USA, France and Canada were chosen for analysis because prior to Sarbanes-Oxley the regulatory structures of these three countries were relatively distinct, whereas subsequent to the Act they appear to be becoming similar.
The authors interpret the increasing apparent similarity in the regulatory structures for statutory auditing in these three countries to be the result of external pressures from global capital markets for standardized regulatory practices. However, this apparent similarity may also be a form of “decoupling”, whereby actors in the institutional field of professional regulation, under pressures from powerful external forces, seek to enhance their legitimacy while maintaining internal flexibility and a certain capacity for resistance against external pressures in the institutional field.
The paper relies on a qualitative analysis of regulatory structures based on a review and analysis of publicly available documents and legislation. As such, it has limitations similar to other qualitative studies.
The regulation of statutory auditing is important to society both to assure the proper functioning of capital markets and to provide reliable information to the general public. Gaining a better understanding of the regulatory structures for statutory auditing advances the public interest.
There have been few prior research efforts that have examined the regulation of statutory auditing through the lens of new institutional theory.
Historically, as a former British colony, Malta has had its accounting and auditing practices highly influenced by UK regulation. However, in the last decade, departures…
Historically, as a former British colony, Malta has had its accounting and auditing practices highly influenced by UK regulation. However, in the last decade, departures have steadily been occurring from a UK‐based regulatory framework to one increasingly influenced both by international standards and European Union requirements. One such departure relates to the retention of the statutory audit requirement for all Maltese companies, despite its earlier abolishment for small companies in the UK. This study evaluates the relevance of a mandatory annual statutory audit requirement for owner‐managed companies as perceived by two interest groups: the owner‐manager and the auditor. It also considers possible alternatives to such a requirement. Results indicate that for Maltese owner‐managed companies, the statutory audit fulfils two important roles: it bears relevance to outside third parties, and it has a positive effect on the owner‐manager and staff.
This chapter discusses social responsibility taking into account the role of women as statutory auditors. Indeed, auditors are expected to confirm whether the financial statements are true and fair and, in accordance with the law, adopt a responsible attitude to the society. Methodologically, this research relied on a two-track approach. The first takes the form of an editorial review and argument which allows the authors to explore social responsibility literature along with implications for the role of women as statutory auditors. The second takes the form of a field research based on an exploratory longitudinal analysis, over the period 1973–2013, and support of the legal regime of Portugal, with public available sources of statistics and reports relating to the statutory auditors. The authors provided a glimpse of the role of women in this profession and, in the last years, the results show a weak increase of women on the statutory audit exercise.
For more than two decades the framework governing the statutory audit of companies within the European Union (EU) has been the subject of debate and reform. Significant…
For more than two decades the framework governing the statutory audit of companies within the European Union (EU) has been the subject of debate and reform. Significant progress has been made with the publication of the European Commission (EC) Green Paper (1996), and the subsequent EC Conference (1997) and EC Communication (1998). The objective of this paper is to provide a commentary on the recent reviews of the regulatory framework for statutory audit at EU level in the context of ongoing developments. The paper concludes that the regulatory framework for statutory audit in the EU is far from complete and much remains to be done. The way forward, at least in the short term, relies on the accountancy and auditing profession taking the lead in finding solutions. The different nature of accounting, financial and legal traditions within the EU, and the need to search for consensus, however, makes it difficult to predict when the EC will be in a position to complete an internal market for audit services within the EU. A significant factor worthy of further consideration is that developments at the international level are in danger of outpacing the EU's ability to respond. Because of the size, power and adaptability of US financial markets, it is possible that US Generally Accepted Accounting Practices (US GAAP) and US Generally Accepted Auditing Practices (US GAAS) may become the dc facto global standards for listed companies.
The purpose of this paper is to examine the factors that are perceived as important for the statutory audit function to restore confidence in the financial statements, its…
The purpose of this paper is to examine the factors that are perceived as important for the statutory audit function to restore confidence in the financial statements, its value relevance and decision usefulness in the aftermath of the financial crisis.
This research used a structured questionnaire to collect data from practising accountants, auditors and accounting academics within the UK. A factor analysis was undertaken to examine the potential inter-correlations that could exist between different factors obtained from the literature. The analysis reduced these variables into the more important factors which were subsequently modelled in a logistic regression analysis.
The paper identified, as critical factors for enhancing statutory audits, “a continuously updated accounting curriculum”, “expansion of the auditor's role”, “frequent meetings between regulators and auditors”, “mandatory rotation of auditors”, “limiting the provision of non-audit services”, “knowledge requirements from disciplines other than accounting” and “encouraging joint audits”. It is hoped that addressing these issues might improve confidence in the audit profession, thereby reinforcing its value relevance.
The study's findings imply that professional accountancy bodies, accounting educators and accounting firms will need to incorporate the key factors identified in this study into their curriculum and training schemes. However, the generalisability of these findings might be limited as the research data were primarily obtained from UK accountants alone.
This study extends the frontiers of knowledge on critical factors that could reinforce users’ confidence in the statutory audit function and have implications for policy and practice.