Congress held a hearing Wednesday on the role of the accounting profession in preventing another financial crisis, listening to testimony from accounting regulators, standard-setters and critics.

“There is reason to consider the extent to which improper, fraudulent, or inadequate financial reporting relating to GAAP reported results or to disclosures outside of the audited financial statements played a role in the financial crisis,” said SEC Chief Accountant James Kroeker in his prepared testimony before the Subcommittee on Securities, Insurance, and Investment of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. “SEC enforcement teams continue to pursue cases stemming from actions that contributed to the financial crisis, following settled enforcement actions involving Countrywide Financial, American Home Mortgage, New Century, IndyMac Bancorp, and Citigroup. When poorly performed audits contribute to or fail to detect financial reporting abuses, there are existing mechanisms for dealing with such misconduct, including SEC or PCAOB enforcement actions. For our part, we will continue to prosecute those who fail to comply with their obligations.”

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