Professional Accounting Blog

    Accounting For Your Prosperity

    DOL Increases Retirement Plan Options for Smaller Businesses

    Posted by Michelle Buckley on Aug 5, 2019 4:30:53 PM

    Topics: Benefit Plan Advising & Auditing

    The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released a final rule which should make it easier for smaller businesses to provide retirement plans to their employees. According to the DOL, the rule will enable more small and midsize unrelated businesses to join forces in multiple employer plans (MEPs) that provide their employees a defined contribution plan such as a 401(k) plan or a SIMPLE IRA plan. Certain self-employed individuals also can participate in MEPs.  

    In October 2018, the DOL issued a proposed rule to clarify when an employer group or association, or a professional employer organization (PEO), can sponsor a MEP. (A PEO is a company that contractually assumes some human resource responsibilities for its employer clients.) The final rule, effective September 30, 2019, is similar to the proposal, but not entirely.

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    Using Construction Technology can Result in Significant Cost Savings and Efficiencies

    Posted by Carlin Culbertson on Aug 2, 2019 10:39:44 AM

    Topics: Construction

    I recently attended a construction conference and one of the sessions featured a speaker from Dodge Data and Analytics, who do a lot of research related to the construction industry.  Part of the presentation focused on industry technology and the impact it’s having on construction firms.  Here are some of the takeaways.   

    Building Information Modeling (“BIM”) software is already in use at a lot of contractors.  It is software that allows a contractor to create a digital model/plan of a building, highway, etc. which has significant advantages over a traditional blueprint or paper-based plan.  It provides a great visualization tool to job owners during the bid and planning phases, during the construction process to provide updates/check progress, and when the project is finished provides a complete digital map of the final project to the job owner.  It can be adjusted easily if a change is needed to the design.  It can be used for projections and what if scenarios (like where should I position a large crane, what’s the most efficient placement for materials staging), among other uses that help with planning and in turn reduce inefficiencies.  It can also be used to track progress compared to the plan, catch potential issues earlier, and reduce rework.  Even though it is commonly called BIM, it applies to construction projects other than just buildings, such as civil projects.  To show how BIM can reduce time and costs, the presentation mentioned that Turner Construction reported efficiency increases of 143% for mechanical, 67% for plumbing, and 36% for fire protection from using BIM and related resources.  Some of the other technologies available today integrate with BIM making it even more powerful.  Learn more about BIM here. 

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    Why Business Valuation is About More Than Forecasted Earnings

    Posted by Lloyd Bell on Jul 30, 2019 2:23:00 PM

    Topics: Corporate Finance

    Business valuation is not as simple as multiplying earnings by a number and receiving recent earnings or forecasting earnings. One must get behind the numbers and assess them in order to know the risk of generating those earnings on an annual or go-forward basis.

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    Accounting Acronyms and Definitions When Buying or Selling a Company

    Posted by Lloyd Bell on Jul 30, 2019 9:49:00 AM

    Topics: Corporate Finance

    Acronyms are ubiquitous in the transaction world. Sometimes I forget that the accounting acronyms that are spoken aren't always known to the companies that are actually participating in the deals. I think we've now become accustomed to hearing EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization), but what about TTM? That's trailing twelve months, and it's used when we're looking at 12-month periods that don't coincide with the company's FY (fiscal year).

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    Dissenting Shareholders: What’s the Fair Value of the Interest?

    Posted by Meaden & Moore on Jul 29, 2019 8:18:00 AM

    Topics: Investigative and Forensic Accounting

    In Athlon Sports Communications v. Duggan, the Tennessee Supreme Court addressed whether the Delaware Block method was mandated when valuing shares in appraisal rights actions. To determine the appropriate method for determining “fair value,” the state court looked outside of its jurisdiction to Weinberger v. UOP, Inc. 

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    Here Today, Gone Tomorrow: Planning for Employee Turnover

    Posted by Barry Thoman on Jul 25, 2019 10:27:00 AM

    Topics: Accounting & Auditing

    Imagine this: It's 9 a.m. on a beautiful Monday morning and the owner of a flourishing company is sitting at their desk enjoying that morning cup of coffee when in walks the Controller. The Controller smiles and says, “I’d like to thank you for 25 great years, but I’ve decided to retire and pursue my passion of ice fishing in Antarctica. You got me for 12 more months!” While this comes as a complete surprise to the owner, this news is already a distant thought. One year is plenty of time to find a new Controller, right?

    Well, this scenario may be a bit far-fetched since 40% of baby boomers say they will work until they die (baby boomers are reaching age 65 from 2011-2029)*. Employee turnover in the workplace, even in management positions, is inevitable and at times unpredictable.

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    Beneish Model Helps Detect Earnings Manipulation

    Posted by Meaden & Moore on Jul 24, 2019 8:34:00 AM

    Topics: Investigative and Forensic Accounting

    Financial statement manipulation is the costliest type of occupational fraud. The 2018 Report to the Nations published by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners found that the median loss from financial statement fraud was $800,000, compared to median losses of $114,000 for asset misappropriation and $250,000 for corruption. 

    With any type of fraud, the sooner it’s detected, the more likely losses can be mitigated. Here’s a tool to help clients quickly assess the likelihood of earnings manipulation.

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    Ohio will keep the Business Income deduction (BID) at $250,000 and maintain the 3% flat rate cap in Budget bill

    Posted by Meaden & Moore on Jul 23, 2019 10:12:35 AM

    Topics: Tax Planning & Strategies

    On July 16, the Ohio House and Senate conference committee on Am. Sub. HB 166 voted to keep the Business Income Deduction (BID) at $250,000 and to maintain the 3% flat rate cap on income above it. Legislators were convinced to avoid tying the BID exclusions to the federal 199A law regarding the Qualified Business Income Deduction. The provision was previously mentioned as an option that would have impacted a broad array of specified service trades and businesses (SSTB). The House, Senate and DeWine Administration in reaching a compromise eliminated the BID for lawyers and lobbyists – two professions which became the focal point of BID concerns by some legislators.

    The Business Income Deduction has been in place since 2015 replacing the previous version the Ohio Small Business Deduction which was adopted in 2013. The deduction allows married filing joint taxpayers to deduct up to $250,000 of business income from their Ohio adjusted gross income, thereby subjecting any excess business income to be taxed at a flat 3%.

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    How Journal Entries May Signal Fraud

    Posted by Meaden & Moore on Jul 22, 2019 9:51:00 AM

    With a median loss of $800,000, financial statement frauds are the costliest type of white-collar crime, according to the 2018 Report to the Nations by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE). Fortunately, auditors and forensic accountants may be able to detect financial misstatement by testing journal entries for errors and irregularities. Here’s what they look for and how these tests work.

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    Applying the Daubert Standard in Federal Cases

    Posted by Meaden & Moore on Jul 19, 2019 9:25:17 AM

    Topics: Investigative and Forensic Accounting

    Under Rule 702 of the Federal Rules of Evidence, an expert witness may testify if scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge will help a judge or jury make sense of evidence or understand facts. A 1993 U.S. Supreme Court case – Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals Inc. – put this rule to the test, affirming judges’ roles to act as gatekeepers against “junk science.”

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