Public company audits worldwide suffer from persistent deficiencies in critical audit areas, raising concern among international audit regulators, according to a new report released Thursday by the International Forum of Independent Audit Regulators.

“The high rate and severity of inspection deficiencies in critical aspects of the audit, and at some of the world’s largest and systemically important financial institutions, is a wake-up call to firms and regulators alike: More must be done to improve the reliability of audit work performed globally on behalf of investors,” said Lewis H. Ferguson, who chairs IFIAR and is a board member of the U.S. Public Company Accounting Oversight Board.

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