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tag 0 Download 9 Pages / 2,005 Words tag 21-10-2020


Part 1
Audit firms are categorized in a number of ways; the two most common being the international ‘Big 4’ audit firms and the ‘non-Big 4’ (or mid-tier) audit firms.
The Big 4 audit firms are; (i) PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC), (ii) Ernst and Young (EY), (iii) KPMG, and (iv) Deloitte.
Most audit firms maintain a website that explains the services offered by the firm and provides resources to their clients and other interested parties. The services offered by most firms include both audit and non-audit services.
Find the websites for: (a) a ‘Big 4’ audit firm and (b) a ‘non-Big 4/mid-tier’ audit firm. Present a ‘business report’ that addresses the following two requirements;
(a) Compares your two audit firms on the following ten characteristics: 

i. Range of services provided.
ii. Geographic coverage (i.e. where their offices are located).
iii. Number of staff and special skills offered.
iv. Industries in which they claim specialisation/expertise.
v. Publications and other materials provided to their clients or the general public
(b) Makes a recommendation on which audit firm your group would prefer to work for and why. Your explanation must refer to the material presented in Part 1 (a). If the recommendation of your group is ‘undecided’, then explain why, again, referring to the material presented in Part 1 (a).
Part 2
Research on Arthur Andersen/Enron
In 2002, the audit firm Arthur Andersen (one of the then ‘Big 5’ audit firms!) collapsed following charges brought against it in the United States relating to the failure of its client, Enron. Some other clients announced that they would be dismissing Arthur Andersen as their auditor even before it was clear that Arthur Andersen would not survive.
(a) Using any two of the three theories outlined in Gay and Simnett (2015, Chapter 1, pages 20-21)) (i.e., the prescribed textbook) on the demand for assurance
((i) Agency Theory,
(ii) Information hypothesis, and
(iii) Insurance hypothesis), explain some reasons why these clients took this action. 
(b) Present an argument of why a similar event is not likely to happen again. Your discussion should be
(i) in context of what went wrong with Arthur Anderson/Enron and
(ii) make specific references to how regulations and auditing standards have changed since the collapse of Arthur Andersen.
Part 3 Format and presentation quality
As mentioned above, Part 1 (a) and Part 1(b) should be presented in a ‘business report’ format.
A key aspect in your group’s choice of format/layout should be to ensure you impart your key messages effectively (i.e., complete the requirements) and efficiently
As per the Submission Guidelines on page 1, the report also should be coherent, and so consistency is expected throughout (e.g., formatting, language style, and linkages between the parts).
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