The two regulatory "missionaries" responsible for bringing religion to the accounting profession - the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board and the Securities and Exchange Commission - told House lawmakers that their tandem efforts are paying off.Oversight of auditors by the three-year old PCAOB "has already changed the environment of registered public accounting firms," and the board's regulatory presence has "triggered a profound shift in the overall character of public company auditing," PCAOB Chairman William J. McDonough said in remarks before the House Financial Services Committee.

"More important," he said, "our oversight has changed auditors' attitudes toward their accountability," because they now "understand that their work is much more likely to be reviewed within months or even weeks by the PCAOB's well-experienced, full-time inspectors."

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