Accountants relieved as audit shake-up plan watered down

City A.M. Reporter
THE COMPETITION Commission yesterday watered down its audit reforms, pleasing big accountants and their clients but putting itself at odds with tougher reforms looming from the European Union.

The Competition Commission now wants FTSE 350 companies to put their book-keeping out to tender at least once a decade, to shake up a market dominated by KPMG, PwC, EY and Deloitte.

But the changes row back on July’s proposal to force companies to re-tender their audit work every five years.

“[W]hile some may regard the outcome of the investigation as being less radical than many would have hoped, the real importance of the investigation has been to shine a spotlight on a previously dark recess of corporate governance,” said James Roberts, senior audit partner at BDO, a mid-sized company trying to break into the blue-chip audit market.