The accounting profession has long served as a cornerstone of the finance and business world, driving trust, opportunity and prosperity for individuals, communities, companies and economies. Accountants guide organizations of every size, helping them navigate new and emerging trends that unlock opportunities. Businesses, non-profits, governments, investors and capital markets turn to the profession for strategic advice and high-quality accounting, audit, tax and business management services. The profession is committed to living up to a comprehensive code of conduct, national and local laws and regulations and acting in the public interest.
Our Values and Beliefs
Professional expertise is critical to well-functioning capital markets. Business leaders, investors, financial statement users and others rely on the accounting profession’s expertise. A hallmark of the CPA (Certified Public Accountant) license and CGMA (Chartered Global Management Accountant) credential is the ability to assess, adapt to and lead amidst complex regulations, disruption, competition and uncertainty.
Accounting professionals connect people, planet and prosperity. Charged with analyzing, managing and reporting on the flow of essential information and insights the accounting profession has the knowledge to help all stakeholders achieve sustainable, long-term value creation.
Tech-enabled audits enhance audit quality and improve financial statement information. Using innovative technologies like machine learning allows the profession to analyze and test a broad range of transactions. By identifying the riskier ones, they produce greater value for all users—including regulators, investors, management and those charged with governance.
Transparent, balanced and inclusive auditing and accounting standard setting create trust in capital markets. Accounting professionals serve as capital market gatekeepers. Their professional skepticism, judgement, expertise and commitment to the public interest inform their work to audit, assure and report on the financial and non-financial information produced by private and public companies, non-profits and governments.
Independent standard-setting bodies and accounting standards should be free – in fact and appearance – of undue influence from special interests. The financial reporting and standard setting system must be balanced and inclusive so that no one participant or group inappropriately benefits. Standard setters and the standards themselves must help investors, lenders and other capital providers make informed business decisions.
Clear, consistent, and timely regulation and guidance is needed and should reflect the input and needs of all parties. These include accountants, investors, finance leaders and academics. Information sharing and feedback improve quality and protect the public interest.
All parties, including accounting professionals and capital market participants, benefit from rigorous education standards, appropriate licensure requirements and a regulatory framework that includes local and national oversight. The accounting profession embraces integrity, objectivity, independence and expertise – core values that reinforce a level of trust unmatched in the financial services arena. These principles and robust practice monitoring guide accounting professionals’ work, insights and actions.
Fraud deterrence and detection is the collective responsibility of auditors, management, regulators and those responsible for governance. Accounting professionals complete millions of successful public and private company audits each year. Inside businesses, accounting professionals create, maintain and enforce internal controls and lead the statutory reporting and compliance at the federal, state, and regulatory levels. Auditors apply skepticism, independence and professional judgement to obtain reasonable – not absolute – assurance that clients’ financial statements lack material misstatement due to error or fraud.