• Protecting Trade Secrets in a Remote Work Environment

    As more companies offer hybrid or fully remote work environments, the effort to protect trade secrets will grow as a concern. Since March 2020, legions of employees have been working from home with nearly unfettered access to company information. Some of that information may be regarded as trade secrets. Much has been written about the general cybersecurity threat remote work creates, but the exposure of trade secrets and other strategic company information poses an equally serious threat.
  • Identifying and Communicating Reportable Findings

    Statement on Auditing Standards (SAS) No. 136, Forming an Opinion and Reporting on Financial Statements of Employee Benefit Plans Subject to ERISA, requires auditors to communicate in writing reportable findings from audit procedures to management or those charged with governance on a timely basis. Prior to SAS 136, these items may have been communicated verbally or in a separate report discussing internal control related matters.
  • Pennsylvania Local Tax Implications of Remote Work

    Remote work arrangements are becoming increasingly commonplace. What began as a COVID-19 necessity has come to be seen as an employee benefit. However, widespread remote work could expose businesses to additional tax risks and filing obligations.
  • Avoiding Errors in Establishing Basis in Business Interests

    Busy tax practitioners often focus on issues of immediate urgency, which can sometimes leave them susceptible to making errors when determining the tax basis of interests in business entities, including C corporations, S corporations, and partnerships. (References to corporations and partnerships include limited liability companies treated as such for tax purposes.)
  • Blazing New Trails in Public Accounting through Social Entrepreneurship

    Social entrepreneurship efforts tend to be industry-specific and lean on professional practices to enact valuable changes. This feature weighs how public accounting can adopt social entrepreneurship through an analysis of two important industry stakeholders: firms and millennials.
  • Inflation: What’s Behind It and What’s to Come

    CPAs, in both public accounting and industry, are well-positioned to collect, measure, and interpret the financial data needed to navigate organizations through a potentially long inflationary period. Reevaluating operational cost structures, calculating unit cost for products sold and services provided, tracking changes in gross margins, and assisting with pricing strategies to maintain profitable operations are a few important ways CPAs can guide and support leaders and executives. This feature will help you identify and weigh the prospects of a potential inflationary period.
  • PICPA at 125 Years: Celebrating an Enduring Legacy, Building an Exciting Future

    On our 125th anniversary, the PICPA would like to share a few highlights from the past and some of our plans for how we will continue coming together to enhance the profession, serve the public, and work together to resolve common issues, big and small. Specifically, this feature looks at our membership, advocacy efforts, professional learning channels, the pipeline of new CPAs, and the profession’s reputation and ethics.
  • Get Comfortable Wrapping Yourself Around Python

    As more tools become necessary for analyzing large and unstructured data sets in today’s digital environment, the open-source programming language Python has emerged as an important contributor to audits, internal audit, IT audit, business planning and forecasting, as well as traditional accounting roles. This feature explains why Python has gained popularity among financial professionals and discusses its relevance to CPAs.
  • ASC 842 Lease Accounting: If You’re Not Ready, It Could Hit You Like a Ton of Bricks

    When the very first IKEA store came to the United States in 1985, there were signs and billboards two years beforehand declaring, “IKEA is coming!” I lived in Plymouth Meeting where it was built, saw the signs, and heard the news. Still, I had no idea what this store was about, let alone whether it would catch on. In my professional life, the new lease accounting standards exposure draft was issued in 2010, and we have long endured the “New lease accounting is coming!” promotions. Finally, it is here: Accounting Standards Codification (ASC) 842 is in effect for 2019 for public companies and 2020 for nonpublic companies.
  • Forensic Accounting and the Use of Artificial Intelligence

    The universe of data continues to grow – in volume, velocity, and variety. For forensic accountants, that means the scope of potentially relevant evidence is growing too. Moreover, forensic accountants must increasingly contend with evidence that is unstructured – meaning the information format doesn’t fit with conventional databases. Between the complexity of emerging data types and the sheer volume, manual methods of data management and analysis can’t keep up.
  • Cryptocurrencies and the Tax Rules Involved

    According to CoinMarketCap.com, at the start of 2018, virtual currency markets were worth about $560 billion. By the end of the year, that same measure was $130 billion. Most people would characterize this as nothing but bad news. However, CPAs are skilled at finding an upside in a disaster. Now that Bitcoin mania has calmed, is there a tax-saving opportunity buried among the wreckage?
  • Business Advisory Services Open New Opportunities for CPAs

    CPA firms and the services they provide continue to evolve as the profession responds to a changing business environment. Many are expanding into business advisory services. This can provide great opportunities for growth if firms clearly grasp their professional independence requirements.
  • Philadelphia Alters Tax Positions Based on Federal Events

    The City of Philadelphia has been busy formulating its tax positions in response to both the South Dakota v. Wayfair Inc. decision and Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. This column summarizes the changes affecting the city’s Business Income and Receipts Tax and Net Profits Tax.
  • Cybersecurity Opportunities for CPA Firms

    It is mind-boggling to think what the future of technology holds, but the ever-present challenge is how to manage the relentless threats from cybersecurity intrusions. Cyberattacks are ranked as the top global risk to business leaders in advanced economies, and the takedown of a single cloud provider could cause $50 billion to $120 billion in economic damage.
  • Accounting AI and Machine Learning: Applications and Challenges

    Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning have become industry buzzwords. This article discusses the state of AI and machine learning as they relate to accounting, and the challenges the profession may face moving forward as these technologies start to spread.
  • These New Audit Standards May Require Your Attention

    SAS Nos. 134 through 140 were issued by the Auditing Standards Board (ASB) to align U.S. and international standards and to communicate more information that is important to financial statement users. The standards were originally expected to be implemented for periods ending on or after Dec. 15, 2020, but the issuance of SAS No. 141 allowed for a one-year delay due to COVID-19. As a result, the effective date for this group of standards is Dec. 15, 2021. The ASB recommends that the standards be implemented concurrently, and early implementation is permitted.
  • Eat the Frog Now: Your Auditor Will Thank You Later

    A famous quip advises, “Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.” Metaphorically, this comic principle holds true for the annual compliance ritual of the company audit. Those who invest the time to prepare for the audit process in advance will have a smoother and less stressful experience than those who delay or procrastinate. Whether you recently completed an audit or one is coming up soon, here are some “frog-eating” tips and best practices.
  • Lessons Learned from a Difficult Year

    CPAs who work with not-for-profits faced huge pandemic-induced challenges. While some struggled to help their organizations, others were able to thrive and add significant value. As you assess and develop your lessons-learned, consider these experiences from the nonprofit sector.
  • The Importance of Branding to Your CPA Firm

    Your firm’s brand plays a more significant role than you think when it comes to its value. A common mistake that many firms make is neglecting to treat their brand like the asset it is.
  • Additional Credentials Can Boost an Already Strong CPA Career

    Specialized professional designations are more than just alphabet soup following your name on a business card. They enhance a practitioner’s skills and make him or her more attractive to employers and clients.
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