In the past four years, the quantity of financial restatements from SEC public registrants has leveled off and their severity has remained low, according to a new report by the research firm Audit Analytics, but restatements have increased from accelerated filers for the third straight year.
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During 2009, 153 accelerated filers disclosed restatements, followed by 158 in 2010, 202 in 2011 and 245 in 2012. In 2011, Revision Restatements (restatements revealed in a periodic report without a prior 8-K, Item 4.02 disclosure that past financials can no longer be relied upon) represented about 65 percent of the restatements disclosed by 10-K filers. This percentage represents the highest percentage calculated since the disclosure requirement came into effect August 2004.
The average number of issues per restatement for 2011 was 1.38, the lowest during the 12 years under review. The average number of days restated was 534 days during 2012, the fifth year in a row with a restatement period above but near 500 days. The average num¬ber of days that were corrected by a financial adjustment increased from 508 to 534 days, but even with the uptick, this amount is lower than the six years between 2002 and 2007.
Audit Analytics also identified the largest negative restatement for each year from 2002 to 2012. The dollar value of the highest adjustment in 2012, a $459 million adjustment by JPMorgan Chase, was the third lowest observed during the 12 years under review. This dollar value is dramatically lower than Fannie Mae’s $6.3 billion adjustment for 2004 and AIG’s $5.2 billion adjustment for 2005.
For a copy of the report, visit www.auditanalytics.com.