Deloitte leads in Q1 SEC audit clients

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Big Four firm Deloitte & Touche brought on the most new Securities and Exchange Commission audit clients in the first quarter of 2017, leading not just among its large-firm peers, but in the combined rankings of all auditors.

Auditors kicked off the year by reporting more new engagements than in the previous quarter (128 in Q1, versus 116 in the last quarter of 2016), but also lost more old clients, netting 52 new engagements, 20 less than in Q4.

Deloitte led in both categories, adding 13 new clients, and netting nine extra engagements in all (see “Q1 Client Gains & Losses”). Savannah, Ga.-based firm DLL CPAs took second place, with six net and new clients (see “Net Engagement Leaders”), all of which it picked up from New Jersey CPA firm Scrudato & Co., whose registration with the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board was revoked in December 2016, and whose owner, CPA John Scrudato, was barred from being an associated person of a registered public accounting firm at the same time.

The two firms naturally led among different types of filers, with Deloitte gaining the most large accelerated filers and the most accelerated files, and DLL CPAs bringing on the most smaller reporting companies (see Audit Leaders”). Crowe Horwath, which had the second-biggest gains among large firms, with five net and five new clients in the quarter, led with the most non-accelerated filers.

With significantly more client wins than any other large firm, Deloitte took in the most new assets audited, with $104.14 billion, and the most new audit fees, with $21.73 million. Mutual fund company Northern Institutional Funds accounted for the vast majority of the new assets, at $71.7 billion, while its biggest new sources of audit fees were security and transportation company Brinks, at $5.73 million, and gambling and racing facility company Penn National Gaming, at $4.33 million (seeNew client leaders”). Interestingly, it came in second in new market capitalization audited, to Grant Thornton, which brought on $16.87 billion, largely from refuse systems company Waste Connections Inc.

KPMG took second in new audit fees and market cap, thanks largely to its engagement by energy services company Avangrid Inc., which accounted for $11.7 billion of its $13.4 billion of new market cap, and $18.7 million of its $19.1 million in new audit fees.

Data for the quarterly rankings are provided by Audit Analytics, a premium online intelligence service delivering audit, regulatory and disclosure analysis. Reach them at (508) 476-7007, or

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Audits Audit preparation Financial reporting PCAOB Deloitte Grant Thornton KPMG Crowe