According to a new report from Cornerstone Research, the number of accounting and auditing enforcement actions the SEC initiated in 2019 was down slightly from the number initiated in 2018, but the number remained near the 2014-2018 average. Monetary settlements of accounting and auditing enforcement actions during 2019 totaled approximately $626 million.  The June 25, 2020 report, which also summarizes accounting and auditing enforcement activity initiated by the PCAOB, is entitled “Accounting and Auditing Enforcement Activity – 2019 Review and Analysis” and can be found here. Cornerstone Research’s June 25, 2020 press release about the report can be found here.
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With the arrival of the new Chair of the SEC, Mary Jo White, the agency has undertaken a variety of new enforcement initiatives. Among the most interesting is the agency use of data anallytics to try to uncover public company accouunting abuses. The following guest post from Christopher L. Garcia, Paul Ferrillo  of the