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Audit Standard Setter Calls for Skepticism

Global Glimpses | August 11, 2010

The body that sets U.K. external audit standards has issued a consultation paper aimed at finding ways of making audit firms more skeptical.

The move follows criticism that auditors have been too soft on their clients, especially in the run up to the financial crisis, and were signing off their accounts without challenging management judgments. Last month the Audit Inspection Unit, which regulates audit quality, said too many U.K. listed company audits were not good enough.

A new paper from the Auditing Practices Board, “Auditor Skepticism: Raising the Bar,” argues that the application of an appropriate degree of professional skepticism is “a crucial skill for auditors.”

It adds: “...

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