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Goldman Sachs Envy Gains New Meaning at Big Four: Jonathan Weil

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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-27-11 04:52 AM
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Goldman Sachs Envy Gains New Meaning at Big Four: Jonathan Weil

The Big Four accounting firm Deloitte & Touche LLP took a beating in the news media last week after its regulator unsealed a confidential portion of an inspection report about its audit work. Articles focused on the parade of horribles found with Deloittes quality controls.

There was another important story, however, that the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board kept hidden: Three of its five board members had recused themselves from participating in meetings or discussions this year concerning Deloitte, because of past or current ties to the firm, according to three people with knowledge of the matter.

The board members -- Lewis Ferguson, Jay Hanson and the boards chairman, James Doty -- were appointed by the Securities and Exchange Commission in January. Doty had been a partner at the law firm Baker Botts LLP, where Deloitte is a client. Ferguson was a partner at the law firm Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP, which also represents Deloitte. Hanson, a former partner at the accounting firm McGladrey & Pullen LLP, has a daughter who works for Deloitte in its Phoenix office.

The boards policy is to not disclose recusals, in spite of its mission to further the public interest, as if these are none of the publics business. Recusals are confidential, Colleen Brennan, a board spokeswoman, said. Doty, Ferguson and Hanson declined to comment. A Deloitte spokesman, Jonathan Gandal, said: The PCAOB itself does not comment on recusals, and as such it would be inappropriate for us to do so.
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