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January 24, 2012
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American Institute of CPAsCPA Letter Daily / The News Source CPAs Count On
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  Top Story 
  • Stakes are high as World Economic Forum meeting begins
    Bankers, officials and other interested parties from around the world are converging on Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum's annual meeting. With Europe's sovereign-debt crisis ongoing, the stakes are high. "We're fighting the last war. The sovereign-debt crisis is undermining the global banking system," said Tobias Levkovich, chief U.S. equity strategist at Citigroup. "We need to take the dire scenario off the table and get a credible path to a resolution." CNBC (1/23), Financial Times (tiered subscription model) (1/23), BBC (1/23) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Financial Focus 
  • Companies perform better with small, regular M&As, study finds
    Companies that regularly acquire or merge with other companies on a relatively small scale tend to outperform those that undertake large acquisitions or focus on organic growth, a study by McKinsey & Co. concluded. Looking at shareholder returns at 1,000 companies over 10 years, McKinsey found that companies with regular M&A programs representing 19% or more of their market capitalization performed better than those with large deals or no M&A activity. The Wall Street Journal/CFO Journal (tiered subscription model) (1/23) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Carmakers look to U.S. plants to avoid currency exposure
    Foreign automakers are putting more of their operations in the U.S. and Mexico to avoid currency risk and the cost of exporting cars, says Tim Denoyer, an analyst with Wolfe Trahan & Co. Japanese companies in particular are embracing the strategy as the yen has risen 6.5% against the U.S. dollar in the past year. The Wall Street Journal/CFO Journal (tiered subscription model) (1/23) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • What do you think? Is it harder or easier to move from one economic class to another than it used to be?
Much easier
Somewhat easier
Somewhat harder
Much harder
Stayed about the same
Not sure

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  A&A Report 
  • Q&A: COSO chairman discusses updated internal control framework
    David Landsittel, chairman of the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission, says in an interview that COSO's updated internal control framework recognizes changes in technology and governance as well as globalization and emerging business models. AICPA members are invited to participate in a free live webinar (no CPE) from 12:30 to 2 p.m. EST next Tuesday on the Internal Control - Integrated Framework update exposure draft. (1/23)
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  Tax Season Watch 
85 days left to file tax returns

  • IRS sends PTIN renewal reminders to practitioners
    The Internal Revenue Service is sending letters to tax practitioners who have not yet renewed their preparer tax identification numbers for 2012, telling them that after Feb. 21 they will be dropped from the list of valid PTIN holders if they do not renew. The IRS has also posted troubleshooting tips for preparers who have trouble renewing. (1/24) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Market Update 
  Policy & Regulatory 
  • Writing down mortgage principals would cost $100B, FHFA says
    If Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were to reduce the mortgage principal on government-owned mortgages that are underwater, the cost to the government would be $100 billion, according to an analysis by Federal Housing Finance Agency. Nearly 3 million mortgages held by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have outstanding balances estimated to be greater than the value of the homes. The Hill/On the Money blog (1/23) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  International View 
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  AICPA News 
  • Register today: Understand issues affecting deferred compensation
    Join this webcast, Understanding 457A and Deferred Compensation, to be held 2 to 3:30 p.m. EST on Wednesday, to get practical guidance on how to advise clients and employers with 457A and similar issues affecting deferred compensation. This 90-minute webcast will focus on the basics of the rules that require deferred compensation to be included in gross income compensation plan of a nonqualified entity (either a foreign corporation or a domestic partnership with foreign or tax-exempt owners) when there is no substantial risk of forfeiture of the rights to such compensation. Register today. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • International interest area on gets a global makeover
    The new international interest area on is a regularly updated focal point for a broad spectrum of international resources and global information. A wealth of internationally relevant assets have been organized in an easy-to-find structure, guiding CPAs, professional accountants (non-CPAs) practicing outside the United States or future CPAs to locate resources most relevant to their own needs. The site provides an index of international topics covered by the Journal of Accountancy and the AICPA's Insider e-newsletter series, links to International Financial Reporting Standards and other internationally important issues, and access to information about AICPA’s international initiatives. National Fact Sheets are information-rich additions to the site, and provide country-by-country information and contacts. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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A great deal of talent is lost to the world for want of a little courage."
--Sydney Smith,
British writer and cleric

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The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, founded in 1887, is the world's largest organization representing the accounting profession, with nearly 370,000 members in 128 countries. AICPA members represent many areas of practice, including business and industry, public practice, government, education, and consulting; membership is also available to accounting students and CPA candidates. The AICPA sets ethical standards for the profession and U.S. auditing standards for audits of private companies, non-profit organizations, federal, state and local governments. It develops and grades the Uniform CPA Examination.

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