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  • Extended audit reports need support from everyone involved

    Transparency has always been key for investors, so in 2013 when the extended audit report was introduced, it was warmly welcomed. The practice promotes reliability, transparency, and willingness to share perspectives, and it was therefore quickly emb...
    • 17 Oct 2017
  • Updating the framework for prospective financial information

    There are an increasing number of funding options available to businesses of all sizes. Typically, to access this, businesses will be required to prepare high quality, credible prospective information. A framework for preparers, Prospective Financial...
    • 2 Oct 2017
  • Let's not lose sight of what has changed over the last ten years

    The decision by the FRC not to pursue the HBOS investigation has reignited the debate about the role of audit. The intervention of the Treasury Select Committee has understandably increased public awareness of a discussion that has exercised the profession for the last decade; but the high profile, and high feelings, around the case risk obscuring the very real improvements we have been working towards for the last ten…

    • 22 Sep 2017
  • Moving on from the cost of exit

    Tomorrow, the Prime Minister travels to Florence to make a much trailed speech that aims to break the current impasse in the Brexit negotiations. Until we hear what she has to say, we don’t know whether it will be the game changer that many are hoping for. Expectations are currently high, especially given the EU Summit next month which will determine if sufficient progress has been made on the key withdrawal issues to…

    • 21 Sep 2017
  • Tackling the weak links in AML supervision

    In the accountancy sector, unqualified accountants who have a duty to report suspicious activity but aren’t members of a professional body are some of the weakest links in the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing. These unqualified accountants often sit on the perimeter of the profession with their AML activities supervised and monitored by HMRC, an organisation that we know is subject to significant…

    • 11 Sep 2017
  • A new designation

    I’m really excited to share the news that ICAEW has unveiled a new professional designation for those individuals who want to pursue a career in business and whose role involves an element of finance related work.

    We all come across people in jobs who would benefit from a deeper understanding of the core business skills required to run a company, for example how finance and accountancy works. They may sit in your…

    • 7 Sep 2017
  • Corporate governance reforms are underwhelming, and may have unintended consequences

    Government plans for corporate governance reform, published yesterday, represented an opportunity to address a pressing problem. Last year the Prime Minister warned of a day of reckoning for Britain’s boardrooms, suggesting radical reforms in binding votes on pay and putting workers on company boards.

    In the light of this, yesterday’s announcement is underwhelming. The two headline policies have gone. Instead we…

    • 30 Aug 2017
  • Confidence falls back as businesses become more cautious

    This morning, ICAEW has published its Q3 UK Business Confidence Monitor which covers the period of the general election and the start of the Brexit negotiations with the European Union.

    Not unsurprisingly, confidence has fallen back into negative territory reversing the upward trend experienced over the last twelve months. Our Business Confidence Index now stands at -8.0, falling from +6.7 in Q2.

    What the underlying data…

    • 14 Aug 2017
  • Working with Government on MTD and PCRT

    I recently held our first formal meeting with the new Financial Secretary, Rt Hon Mel Stride.

    Following the announcement on changes to Making Tax Digital for Business (MTDfB), I reiterated ICAEW’s positive response to the new timetable and changes to the implementation, which mean that MTDfB will not take effect until April 2019 and will only be mandatory at that time for businesses over the VAT threshold. As I…

    • 24 Jul 2017
  • G20: Achieving financial resilience and the SDGs requires multilateral action

    On July 7th-8th, world leaders gathered in Hamburg for the annual G20 summit. At ICAEW, we hosted a G20 policy roundtable in London, convening senior diplomats, business and industry leaders to discuss the highlights of the summit and challenges ahead.

    The German presidency identified the key challenges and priorities for the year ahead as reforming the global financial system; implementing the SDGs to combat climate…

    • 21 Jul 2017
  • Judgement is key to determining materiality in audits

    The concept of materiality is fundamental to the audit of financial statements. Determined by auditors at the planning stage, it helps drive a more efficient and effective audit. Yet experience from practice – along with the outcomes of inspection findings and reviews – suggest that it is an area that poses practical challenges for auditors, and is one where improvements could be made.

    Our new guide, Materiality…

    • 17 Jul 2017
  • Today's announcement on Making Tax Digital

    Today’s announcement by the Financial Secretary to the Treasury outlining a new timetable for Making Tax Digital marks a significant shift in Government policy. The new minister has listened to the voices of our profession as well as business in acknowledging that those small businesses who fall below the VAT threshold should move to a digital tax system at a pace that works for them.

    This is a great outcome to an…

    • 13 Jul 2017
  • Artificial intelligence and the future of accountancy

    Today, we are launching our report Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Accountancy. The report says technology is more powerful and the pace of change quicker than ever – and that AI has the capability to replace, if not supersede, humans in many areas. But I would argue there is more of a case for our reaction being ‘Don’t panic!’ than ‘We’re all doomed!’

    There is understandable…

    • 30 Jun 2017
  • Chancellor puts economy and business back on the agenda

    I hope that this morning’s speech by Philip Hammond signals a more open and flexible approach by the UK Government to Brexit and in particular to its future trading relationship with the European Union.

    I was struck by his desire to avoid fragmentation of financial services and the principles he outlined to approaching this challenge:

    • A new process for establishing regulatory requirements for cross-border business…

    • 20 Jun 2017
  • A vision for a strong economy: ICAEW’s priorities for the new Government

    The next Government has the opportunity to build a stronger and more inclusive economy, and to make the UK one of the very best places in the world to do business.

    With that in mind today we are publishing recommendations in six major areas of policy, which we see as critical for the future success of business in Britain. Drawing on the insights and expertise of our members, we are setting out the priorities which we…

    • 7 Jun 2017
  • Charities should invest in leadership and infrastructure to retain public trust

    Charities play a significant role in the fabric of our national life but they are being scrutinised more closely than ever. The public expects charities to operate to the highest standards with the funds entrusted to them, and it is therefore crucial that they are honest and transparent about the difference and impact they are making. As well as being open, they also need to be resilient and financially sustainable to…

    • 1 Jun 2017
  • What is the accountancy profession’s role in delivering the UN Global Goals?

    Earlier this week ICAEW hosted an event which brought together representatives from the member institutes of Chartered Accountants Worldwide (CAW) to discuss the role of the profession in delivering the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This was the first time that a group of over 80 Chartered Accountants from around the world came together to discuss the SGDs with the objective to encourage our collective CAW…

    • 26 May 2017
  • Analysing the general election manifestos

    Over the last week, ICAEW has been working through the manifestos of the three main national parties contesting next month’s UK general election. We have looked at the policies from the perspective of their relevance to six areas:

    • Public sector spending
    • Taxation
    • Trust in business
    • Regulation
    • Post-Brexit market access and trade
    • Managing the deficit

    Whilst it is not our role to offer…

    • 26 May 2017
  • Growth through asset based finance

    Asset based finance (ABF) has increasingly been used as a source of funding by high growth companies in recent years – from small businesses, to those owned by private equity, to innovative businesses and subsidiaries of some of the world’s largest companies.

    The finance sector is committed to further improving awareness and accessibility of this form of funding, but many members will still think of asset…

    • 24 May 2017
  • How much will the UK pay to exit the EU?

    ICAEW has published a report on the likely cost of the UK’s departure from the EU.

    The wide-ranging speculation around the potential exit charge has escalated in recent weeks. The debate has been characterized by heat and emotion and, given the complex financial relationship between the UK and the EU, it may be difficult to understand how negotiations in this area are likely to play out. As chartered accountants…

    • 17 May 2017
  • ICAEW’s framework for assuring bank regulatory ratios

    Today we are publishing our framework for assuring bank capital numbers. Its aim is to deliver confidence in the key measures of resilience for banks.

    Capital ratios are one of the most important ways to assess a bank’s stability, but they are currently unaudited. It is crucial that the public, regulators and banks themselves can trust these numbers, and developments since the financial crisis have heightened the importance…

    • 15 May 2017
  • Question mark hangs over financial leadership in Government

    Given the challenges facing the UK’s public finances with a growing national debt and increased borrowing, with the negotiations and potential cost of Brexit looming ahead, with the weakening of the pound and household incomes starting to be squeezed, I am both surprised and disappointed that HM Treasury has given up responsibility for improving financial management across the UK Government.

    Only four years ago…

    • 9 May 2017
  • Business confidence turns positive for first time since Brexit vote

    Business confidence has moved into positive territory for the first time since the EU referendum, but businesses are still reluctant to make long-term commitments in a number of areas.

    That is the key finding from our latest Business Confidence Monitor (BCM). The BCM Confidence Index has risen from -8.7 in Q1 2017 to 6.7 in Q2.

    Whatever the outcome of the General Election on 8 June, the incoming Government will need to…

    • 9 May 2017
  • Looking back at a successful 2016

    Today we are publishing our annual review and financial statements for 2016.

    2016 was a successful year for ICAEW. We saw another record year for student numbers, which have risen to 25,822 from 24,149 the year before. Our membership also continued to rise, ending the year at 147,538.

    On the financial side, we closed the year with an operating surplus of £0.8m and overall surplus of £11.3m when fines and cost recoveries…

    • 5 May 2017
  • Introducing our Academia & Education Community and Corporate Governance Group

    As part of our vision of a world of strong economies, ICAEW seeks to nurture communities of professionals whose initiative and integrity help economies thrive. Our members are part of a global network of over 147,000 ICAEW Chartered Accountants. We want all our members to be able to make the most of this network, and to feel included in ICAEW’s activities wherever they are in the world.

    That is why I am delighted…

    • 4 May 2017