Insight / Buying a business - due diligence and potential risks

When eyeing up a potential merger or acquisition it is essential to ensure that due diligence is top of the agenda when buying a business to avoid any unexpected contingent or liabilities. Mercer & Hole's Caroline Stark considers the key issues to consider 

Accounting / Lords seek FRC clarification on true and fair

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has so far remained tight-lipped on requests from the House of Lords Economic Affairs Select Committee to clarify what constitutes ‘true and fair’

Tax / OTS warns of tax blackhole from gig economy

HMRC is facing significant compliance issues with the rise of the so-called sharing and gig economies as it is not clear how tax on any income should be assessed and collected, according to the Office of Tax Simplification (OTS)

Tax / HMRC fails to set out contingency plan for Making Tax Digital rollout

HMRC has not agreed contingency measures with the Treasury should it run into difficulties with plans to digitise the tax system, and must take action to ensure it has a credible plan to make savings without damaging customer service, according to a report by the public accounts committee (PAC) which says its performance remains below par in several key areas

Tax / Plans for EU one-stop shop for online VAT payments

The European Commission is proposing to simplify rules for e-commerce across EU country borders by introducing a one-stop shop for online VAT payments that will cover goods as well as services, in a move which it says will cut compliance costs by 95%

Insight / Poor governance at footballer Didier Drogba's charity

The Charity Commission has issued an action plan for the Didier Drogba Foundation, after an inquiry identified governance failings, but said there was no evidence to support claims of fraud or corruption at the charity which was set up by the former Chelsea footballer and Ivorian international

Insight / Finance mole: Monkey bar’s so last year

During an offsite meeting with head office, Finance Mole is caught off guard in the once uber-cool Monkey Bar

Insight / Minimum £1m penalty introduced for breaching financial sanctions

The Treasury’s Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI) will be able to impose penalties of up to £1m or 50% of the financial sanctions breach, depending on which is higher, from April 2017

Insight / 75% of accounting graduates fear jobs will be taken by robots

Three-quarters of graduates looking to pursue a career in accounting are concerned that automation could make their role redundant within two decades, according to research from online forum WikiJob

Professional Development / People in the news: Crowe Clark Whitehill, JW Hinks, FRC

This week's news of professional moves in the sector includes a head of forensic and counter-fraud services at Crowe Clark Whitehill, JW Hinks gains a business services supervisor and tax consultant, FRC appoints a Board member

Insight / Eight-year ban for financial services director with inadequate accounts

The director of two financial services companies has been disqualified for eight years after an Insolvency Service investigation found he had failed to keep adequate books and records to account for some £5m of expenditure

Technical Alerts

1 Dec 2016

Insight / Practice development: the future of the accounting profession

Amid regulatory, technological and political volatility, Calum Fuller, assistant editor at Accountancy, looks at the future shape of the UK’s accounting profession in the face of a spate of mergers and consolidations

Tax / HMRC ‘complicit’ in Concentrix tax credit check failures

A scathing report on the outsourcing of tax credit checks has accused HMRC of being ‘complicit’ in a ‘cut first, think later’ approach, and claims the department was negotiating the renewal of the contract with supplier Concentrix up until four days before public outcry forced HMRC to terminate the deal

Tax / Editor’s comment: HMRC remains quiet over MTD

HMRC has kept a low profile in the Making Tax Digital campaign with a lack of communications to the actual end users, bar a deluge of technical consultations, something HMRC may grow to rue in the future, says Sara White, editor, Accountancy

Accounting / CPD module - property, plant and equipment under FRS 102 - NEW

This month's exclusive CCH Daily CPD module focuses on FRS 102 and the treatment of capital versus repairs in annual financial statements, outlining the differences and enabling reporters to understand how to distinguish between the two items under new UK GAAP reporting rules

Tax / MPs warn against rushed MTD implementation

Andrew Tyrie, chair of the Treasury committee, has challenged the government over its planned timetable for HMRC to introduce its flagship making tax digital (MTD) scheme, warning that announcements made in the Autumn Statement suggest there will need to be delays to the proposed 2018 start, or implementation will be very rushed

Accounting / Updates to IFRS Foundation constitution

The trustees of the IFRS Foundation, responsible for the oversight and governance of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), have amended its constitution, reducing the size of the board from 16 to 14 and reclassifying the geographical distribution of trustees

Tax / OECD countries report revenues at all time high

Tax revenues collected in advanced economies have continued to increase above last year’s all-time high, with taxes on labour and consumption, particularly VAT, representing a rising share of the total, according to OECD research

Insight / Government to review gig economy

The government has begun a review of modern labour market practices with a regional tour visiting different sectors, as part of a bid to examine whether there need to be changes to the tax and legal systems to match new ways of working and ‘disruptive’ business models

Tax / Tax filing deadlines: Dec 2016 - Feb 2017

The key HMRC filing deadlines from December to February 2017 including PAYE settlement agreement, self assessment tax returns, PAYE cheque payments

Tax / Tax updates: December 2016

Revised code of conduct to curb excessive tax planning, confidentiality breach over Ingenious, Trump tax plan, Lifetime ISA rules fleshed out, application for tax postponement allowed

Insight / Development updates: December 2016

Professional development news roundup includes PKF Cooper Parry fees hit £22m, Big Four and ICAEW meet Brexit minister, Shaw Gibbs and Grant Thornton expand, FCA caps pension early exit charges

Audit / Audit updates: December 2016

In our monthly roundup of developments in audit and governance, IAASA consults on auditing framework for Ireland in FRC handover, PwC faces FRC tribunal over Connaught, IFRS revenue recognition hit for Rolls-Royce

Tax / VAT updates: December 2016

Graham Elliott, director, City & Cambridge Consultancy on effective VAT revision prior to date of registration, capital goods scheme, VAT cases

Accounting / Accounting updates: December 2016

In this month’s roundup of developments in accounting and financial reporting, BT rings £145m accounts error alarm, £10m misstatement at IT supplier, FRC calls for disclosure on tax status

Insight / Called to account: December 2016

Former Co-operative Bank CEO admits misconduct, car dealer given suspended sentence for £113k fraud, accounatnt in £40k employer tax fraud

Accounting / Legal updates: December 2016

In this month's legal updates, experts at law firm Gateley plc consider breach of duty leading to forfeiture of partnership share in Hosking EWHC 2418 (Ch), the impact of the Criminal Finance Bill on accountants working on mergers and acquisitions, and the impact of the Uber driver ruling on employment arrangements in Aslam 

Tax / Employment tax updates: December 2016

Jackie Hall ACA CTA, partner at RSM on workers' employment status post Uber, NICs on Christmas gifts, trivial benefits exemption

Technical Alerts

30 Nov 2016

Audit / Audit thresholds may shift post-Brexit

Matthew Stallabrass ACA, audit partner, corporate team at Crowe Clark Whitehill, reviews the potential changes to the audit and regulatory environment in a post-Brexit world

Accounting / Exclusive download: FRS 102 guide & case studies part 2

In the latest exclusive Accountancy FRS 102 download series, part two of our essentials guide focuses on pensions under FRS 102, deferred tax, financial instruments and leases, focusing on a selection of hot topics for preparers

Tax / St Andrew’s Day sees Scotland given tax powers

The government has chosen today, St Andrew's Day, to make the formal Parliamentary orders for the Scotland Act 2016 which confirm that landmark new income tax powers will transfer to the Scottish Parliament in 2017

Insight / Scotland introduces Bankruptcy Act to streamline insolvency rules

Scotland’s Bankruptcy Act 2016, which brings together previous Scottish insolvency legislation, comes into force today with the updated Bankruptcy Regulations being introduced along with the Act

Tax / HMRC push to encourage personal tax account uptake

With two months to go until the January filing deadline, HMRC is urging first-time self assessment taxpayers to register for a personal tax account (PTA) in a bid to drive up usage of its online services for tax returns

Tax / ‘Digital left-behinds’ at risk in new online tax services

The Low Incomes Tax Reform Group (LITRG)  is calling for urgent action to help the ‘digital left-behinds’ it has identified, warning that these individuals may find it hard to remain tax compliant once HMRC’s Making Tax Digital (MTD) initiative starts in 2018

Accounting / EU adopts IFRS 9 Financial Instruments for 2018 rollout

The EU has formally endorsed IFRS 9 Financial Instruments for use across member states, reflecting the changes to global accounting standards and replacement of IAS 39

Insight / Slipshod accounts see care home director banned

The director of a Dorset care home has been handed a seven year disqualification for failing to ensure the company kept adequate accounts, following an Insolvency Service investigation into £1.9m of unexplained spending

Insight / European Payments Council launches EU-wide instant payment transfers

The European Payments Council (EPC), the coordination and decision making body of the European banking industry in relation to payments, has announced the official launch of a scheme enabling instant pan-European euro credit transfers in a bid to simplify and speed up payments

Insight / Warning on ‘box ticking’ corporate governance plans

There have been mixed reactions to the government’s green paper on changes to the corporate governance framework, which sets out proposals to increase shareholder influence on executive pay, improve links between the board and workers, and bring large privately-held companies within scope

Tax / Tax data: CGT data, HMRC rates of interest - Dec 2016

Download the HMRC CGT indexation allowance for August 2016, RPI Index for October 2016 and HMRC rates of interest, changes to stamp duty land tax (SDLT) and land and buildings transaction tax (LBTT) rates, and more                                                                                                                                            

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