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Look Before You Leap: Evaluating a Section 83(b) Election

Do you and your employees know how to get the most tax savings when choosing a benefit election?  Sujan Rajbhandary, senior member of Mercer Capital’s Financial Reporting Valuation Group, discusses an IRC Section 83(b) election and what’s considered in making this choice. To read more about the results of this report in the Mercer Capital's Financial Reporting Blog, click: Look Before You Leap: Evaluating a ...

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AICPA Weighs in on Tax Reforms to Paul Ryan

The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) has sent a letter urging Rep. Paul Ryan (R–Wis.), the new chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, to follow the AICPA’s principles of good tax policy to guide tax reform. The letter comes in response to the Tax Reform Act of 2014, a draft proposal put forth by the former Ways and Means chair Dave Camp (R–Mich.). The AICPA’s letter addresses ...

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Calculations and Opinions: Bringing Clarity to a Cloudy Issue

Opinions are like viewpoints; everyone has one Opinions are often provided in connection with calculation values and a conclusion of value. SSVS No. 1 does not prohibit or explicitly endorse either. In this article, Jim Hitchner shares his views on whether the term “opinion”―offered in a litigation or non-litigation engagement—should be used as part of the engagement or offered in connection with a calculat ...

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AICPA Survey Says Valuators Optimistic About Future

  In spite of the current economic climate, a recent survey from the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) showed that 54 percent of valuation professionals expected a 10 to 50 percent increase in the demand for their services over the next two to five years. These results are part of the 2014 AICPA Survey on International Trends in Forensic and Valuation Services. Forensic experts were even more optimist ...

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Standards Though the Eyes of a Practitioner

Reconciling compliance with multi-agency valuation standards While standards exist to uphold the integrity of business valuation, multi-credentialed professionals can face a daunting task when trying to compare and comply with all guidelines across the spectrum of issuing agencies. This article seeks to root out possible conflicts and create clarity among standards so valuators may perform with less effort ...

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Mercer’s Five Big Valuation Issues

  In case you missed it, Z. Christopher Mercer, ASA, CFA, ABAR, founder and CEO of Mercer Capital, was the keynote speaker at the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) and the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) 2014 bi-annual joint conference this year. His presentation concerned The Five Really Big Valuation Issues. They included: 1.) discount rates, 2.) control premiums and minority interest ...

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AICPA Protests IRS Regulation for Tax Preparers

  The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) recently sent a letter to the IRS calling a proposed “voluntary” certification program for unenrolled tax return preparers “unlawful and improper”. In a recent ruling, Loving, No. 13-5061 (D.C. Cir. 2/11/14), it was held that the IRS does not have the statutory authority to regulate tax return preparers. In the aftermath, IRS Commissioner, John Koskinen, stated ...

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Current Controversies Regarding Option Pricing Models

A view of the use and limits of option models (Part 2 of 2) Option pricing models (OPMs) are increasingly used to estimate the discount for lack of marketability (DLOM) in the business valuation profession. Some analysts disagree about whether OPMs are applicable for estimating the DLOM. Since OPMs were originally derived to determine option prices for publicly traded securities, many analysts question the ...

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Current Controversies Regarding Option Pricing Models

A view of the use and limits of option models (Part 1 of 2) Option pricing models (OPMs) are increasingly used to estimate the discount for lack of marketability (DLOM) in the business valuation profession. Some analysts disagree about whether OPMs are applicable for estimating the DLOM. Since OPMs were originally derived to determine option prices for publicly traded securities, many analysts question the ...

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AICPA Draws the Line on Leases

In a letter to the FASB and IASB, the AICPA’s Financial Reporting Executive Committee (FinREC) suggested that a dividing line be created between Type A and Type B leases that deviates from the rule the boards have proposed.  While FinREC supported the objectives calling for transparency and recognition on-balance sheet for all leases, it disagreed with the test for how leases would be classified.  For detai ...

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FASB Proposals Simplify Intangible Assets

Recently, the FASB issued exposure drafts of Accounting Standards Updates (ASUs) which propose reductions in the cost and complexity of accounting for intangible assets acquired by private companies, as well as subsequent testing for goodwill impairment.  The proposed changes in the drafts involve alterations to Accounting Standards Codification (ASC) Topic 85, Business Combinations, and Topic 350, Intanbig ...

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Financial Forensics, Certified Fraud Examiners, and Master Analyst in Financial Forensics

It is far broader than forensic accounting While financial forensics may share some common ground with forensic accounting, these professions are far from identical twins. D. Larry Crumbley, CPA, MAFF lays out the differences between these often misunderstood professions and explores the academic factors that may be contributing to the confusion. ...

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CPA Shortage Looming

The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) reports that in less than five years, 75 percent of all CPAs will be at or very near retirement age. Naturally, there’s an undercurrent of panic in the profession. Small and midsize firm owners are reluctant to sell to large operations, not to mention the pain of watching what they’ve spent a lifetime to create simply disappear. There’s also the ...

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Estate & Gift Tax Update

In the first installment of a two-part series, the AICPA reviews the most important developments affecting estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax and trust income tax over the last 12 months.  In the period from June 2012 through May 2013, the analysis covers legislative developments, rulings, pending cases, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 and inflation adjustments for 2013.  The s ...

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Survey: Business Development Now Tops Forensic and Valuation Services Practitioners’ List of Concerns

Business development concerns outpacing technical issues A new survey by the AICPA reveals that priorities for forensic and valuation services (FVS) professionals have changed significantly in just the last three years. The report details what’s most important to them today and why it may not have as much to do with the economy as you think. ...

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Providing Effective Litigation Services (Part 3 of 4)

An overview of the Federal Rules of Evidence, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and leading pre- and post-Daubert cases In this third part of a four-part series, the focus turns to the rules of evidence and standards used to admit the testimony of expert witnesses. While a minority of jurisdictions follows the Frye standard, the majority has adopted the Daubert standard. Objective testimony is critical, whic ...

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Do Business Valuation Standards Apply to Non-Accredited CPAs?

Will the valuation report prepared by the non-accredited CPA be admitted? The author was recently involved in an Oklahoma domestic relations case where the opposing expert contended he did not have to abide by AICPA valuation standards, reporting or otherwise, since he was not a member of the organization. This article summarizes how this issue was handled by the Oklahoma judge. ...

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AICPA Supports Bill to Exempt Valuation Specialists from Fiduciary Status—CPA Practice Advisor

Requiring Valuation Analysts to Have Specialized Trainingk Credentials, and to Adhere to Professional Standards Will Protect ESOP Participants and Beneficiaries   CPA Practice Advisor reports that the President and CEO of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA), Barry C. Melancon, CPA, CGMA, has publicly announced his organization's support for a new bill in the House of Representatives.  H.R. 2041 would mod ...

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Current Practice Issue: Applying the Equity Method —Grant Thornton

 On the Horizon Offers Two Examples of Appropriate Ways to Apply FASB Guidance.  Plus: New Guidance on Reporting Discontinued Operations and Not-for-Profit Entities Grant Thornton recently published a useful article on applying the equity method in its On the Horizon web-based publication, which also notes that the Fair Accounting Standards Board (FASB) has suggested new guidelines for reporting discontinue ...

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