ACCOUNTING: Private-company audits make a comeback, but not for all

In recent years, Sarbanes-Oxley Act regulations have been a moving force in increasing the emphasis on improved internal controls, governance and accountability in the public markets. The Securities and Exchange Commission has always required audits for publicly traded companies, but the primary users of private companies’ financial statements-banks and other lending institutions-have been slow to mandate audits. With the recent turmoil in credit markets and increasingly tight credit requirements for closely held business loans, the audit appears to be coming…

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ACCOUNTING: Don’t be fooled by incomplete offers for your business

“Based on the numbers you have shared with me, I think the business should fetch about $5 million.” This statement was made to one of my clients by a business broker after an hour-long meeting and a brief review of a couple of years of my client’s financial information. I sat quietly in disbelief observing my client’s body language change from anticipation to relief and joy. I could see him doing the math in his head-$5 million was the number…

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