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    1. Alignment is key for internal audit to deliver more value   WebExclusive

    BY Ken Tysiac
    The demands on internal audit have increased significantly in recent years as technology has advanced, regulation has become more rigorous, risks have emerged, and companies have sought more business insights from internal audit teams.“That bar continues to rise,” FedEx Chief Audit Executive Robert King, CPA, said Tuesday during a PwC webcast.

    2. 11 issues that could flare up at the next shareholder meeting   WebExclusive

    BY Ken Tysiac
    U.S. public companies are operating in an environment full of both risk and opportunity as they prepare for their annual shareholder meetings.Cyberthreats, disaster planning, and political and economic unrest are among many factors that make the current climate hazardous for many companies.Although high values in the stock market indicate an environment that has improved significantly—if slowly—since the lowest depths of the global financial crisis, recent dips in the market indicate that volatility still exists.Shareholders are likely to be focused on both the risks and the opportunities in upcoming shareholder meetings, according to Wendy Hambleton, CPA, a partner

    3. Five key defenses against risk   WebExclusive

    BY Ken Tysiac
    When does a company pull the trigger on an acquisition or investment? When is expanding into a new market a prudent choice? And when is the right time to hire additional personnel or change employee benefits?These are among the many questions organizations consider through a lens of strategic opportunities and risks.

    4. Six key risk areas merit attention in 2013 audit cycle   WebExclusive

    BY Ken Tysiac
    Auditing of internal control over financial reporting, a topic that has received a lot of attention from the PCAOB this year, is among the key risk factors for the 2013 audit cycle, according to a new Center for Audit Quality (CAQ) alert.The alert describes six key areas of potential risk in auditors’ work.

    5. Align your controls with COSO’s principles   WebExclusive

    BY Ken Tysiac
    A mapping exercise is one of the most important activities for any organization implementing the updated 2013 internal control framework of the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (COSO), experts say.The updated framework includes 17 newly described principles across the five components of internal control that were present in the original, 1992 framework.

    6. Affordable Care Act holds opportunities, challenges for internal auditors   WebExclusive

    BY Ken Tysiac
    Health care regulations associated with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), P.L. 111-148, have created new opportunities for internal auditors.But internal auditors may need to get more familiar with PPACA’s provisions to help their organizations understand the risks associated with the law and their organization’s preparedness to mitigate those risks, according to a new report.More than four in 10 (41%) of 428 North American internal audit managers said risks associated with PPACA will be moderately or extremely impactful on their organization, according to the fall “Pulse of the Profession” survey by the Institute of Internal

    7. Internal audit oversight  

    BY Richard J. Anderson, CPA and J. Christopher Svare
    One of an audit committee’s most important responsibilities is to oversee the organization’s internal audit function. Here are 10 steps audit committees can take to facilitate proper oversight and direction of internal audit: Evaluate the current and projected scope of internal audit coverage of risk management and governance.

    8. New duties on horizon for internal auditors   WebExclusive

    BY Ken Tysiac
    Even as assurance and compliance responsibilities are expanding for internal auditors, a significant shift in their strategic duties is on the horizon, according to a new survey. More than half (54%) of respondents expect that in the next two years, internal audit’s primary mandate will be providing stakeholders with business insights and serving as a strategic adviser to the organization, according to EY’s Global Internal Audit Survey 2013.

    9. Bill prohibiting mandatory audit firm rotation passes U.S. House   WebExclusive

    BY Ken Tysiac
    The U.S. House of Representatives on Monday approved a bipartisan bill that would prohibit the PCAOB from requiring mandatory audit firm rotation for public companies. The bill, sponsored by Reps. Robert Hurt, R-Va., and Gregory Meeks, D-N.Y., was introduced on April 15. It would amend the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 to prohibit the PCAOB from requiring public companies to use specific auditors or requiring the use of different auditors on a rotating basis.

    10. GAO advises SEC to require disclosure of auditor attestation of ICFR   WebExclusive

    BY Ken Tysiac
    The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is recommending that the SEC consider requiring public companies to disclose whether they obtained an auditor attestation of their internal controls over financial reporting (ICFR). In a report to congressional committees, the GAO said attestation reports increase investor confidence. Requiring disclosure of whether a company voluntarily included an attestation report in its annual report would increase transparency for investors, according to the GAO.
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