Accounting in the United States

Overview by

Accounting System

Accounting Standards
Accounting in the USA is based on domestic standards defined by:
- The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
- The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB)
- The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB)
- The Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board (FASAB)
Accounting Regulation Bodies
AICPA, The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
GASB, The Governmental Accounting Standards Board
Accounting Law
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002).
Difference Between National and International Standards (IAS/IFRS)
International Financial Reporting Standards ( IFRS) are destined to be the lingua franca of the international accounting world. In today's increasingly international business environment, American CPAs are frequently encountering IFRS as they serve U.S. subsidiaries of foreign companies and foreign subsidiaries of U.S. companies and as they assist in cross-border transactions. The standard setters for U.S. GAAP and IFRS are engaged in a convergence process designed to make the two sets of standards compatible.
Accounting News
Accounting Zone
New York Times Accounting
Accounting Web

Accounting Practices

Tax Year
Usually Financial year begins on January 1 and ends on December 31 of the same year.
Accounting Reports
Annual report including income of statement, the balance sheet along with supporting CPA notes. The report must be filed on a Quarterly basis (10 K) with the SEC company.
Publication Requirements
According to the S-X rule of the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission), all companies which make a public appeal for saving have to present annually to the SEC an information file called "10 K" for American companies and "20 F" for foreign companies.
Companies quoted on the stock-exchange have to publish their accounts.

Accountancy Profession

Certified public accountants and tax accountants are specialists providing accounting and tax support to companies operating in USA. They have a monopoly on the performance of audits under the Certified Public Accountant Law, while tax accountants have a monopoly on tax agent services, preparation of tax documentation and tax consultations under the Certified Tax Accountant Law.
The Certified Public Accountants Law provides key matters relating to the accountancy profession such as examinations, qualifications, registrations, duties, responsibilities and penalties.
Professional Accountancy Bodies
The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
Institute of Management Accountants
National Association of State Boards of Accountancy
American Accounting Association
Member of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC)
The US are menbers of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC).
Member of Other Federation of Accountants
Member of the Confederation of Asian and Pacific Accountants ( CAPA) represents national accountancy organisation in the Asia-Pacific region.
Audit Bodies
Companies have to seek a statutory auditor to conduct an annual audit of the financial health of their organization. You can contact:
Public Company Accounty Oversight Board
Deloitte & Touche
Ernst & Young ;

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