Sunday, December 20, 2009

Capgemini Employee Shareholding Plan A Success, Our Math Shows Why

In November 2009, we had reported on the our news feed on Capgemini’s effort to launch a shareholding plan for its employees, with a maximum of 6,000,000 shares reserved for their employees, opening on November 17, 2009 and settlement-delivery of these shares to occur on December 16, 2009...

Friday, December 18, 2009

Big Ernst and Young Settlement on Bally Fitness, Large Implications

This is the leading item on the website today, with the SEC charging Ernst & Young LLP and 6 current and former partners for their roles in the accounting fraud at Bally Total Fitness Holding Corporation...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Accenture Q1-2010 Revenue Short But EPS Beats Street. Good Outlook

Accenture Q1-2010 Revenue Short, But EPS Beats Street. Good Outlook

Accenture (NYSE:ACN) just reported Q1-2010 results after market close today. The full earnings release is available on the investor relations site. We will only provide our quick analysis here at this time...

KPMG 2009 Revenues of $20 B Drop 11%, Most Among Big Four Firms

KPMG just reported its 2009 combined revenues for the fiscal year ending 30 September 2009 of US$20.11 billion versus US$22.69 billion for the prior 2008 fiscal year. This was a 11.4% decline in U.S. dollars terms and a 2.6% decline in local currency terms...

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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

KPMG Europe Revenues Drop 0.4% As Expected, Audit Shines

KPMG Europe LLP, which covers the UK, German, Swiss, Spanish and Belgian practices just reported its 2009 revenues at €3.5 billion in the year ending 30 September 2009, a 0.4% drop from 2008 on a pro forma basis at constant exchange rates. Overall, KPMG said that top-line growth proved hard to come by as a result of difficult market conditions...

Monday, December 14, 2009

Big Four Firms Dominate Best Places to Intern Rankings

If you want to find a great job upon graduating from college, then starting early appears to be the secret.

Business Week and Bloomberg just released their third annual listing of top undergraduate internship programs in the country based on pay and the percentage of interns who get full-time jobs, and feedback from career services directors...

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Accenture Makes Right Decision, Drops Tiger Sponsorship

Just now, on the website Newsroom, we find the following news update:

“Accenture Sponsorship Update

Related Assets December 13, 2009NEW YORK; Dec. 13, 2009 – Accenture (NYSE: ACN) today announced that it will not continue its sponsorship agreement with Tiger Woods...

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Tiger Drops Golf, Accenture Drops Ads

Yesterday, Tiger Woods made a public statement that he was taking an indefinite break from professional golf on his home page. Much has been made of the exact words used in this statement. Regardless this was the perhaps the right (and very tough) decision to make under these trying circumstances...

Thursday, December 10, 2009

China and Brazil Lead IPO Comeback In 2009

In consonance with a smart pickup in global equity markets from a trough in March 2009 to near January 2009 values towards the end of this year, Initial Public Offerings have also gathered a lot of steam...

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Tiger Woods Dilemma for Accenture – Cloud or Cancer?

Using celebrities as company advertising fronts has both immense rewards and equally high risk. On the positive side, associating with a well-known, successful and popular personality provides instant brand recognition, enhances the company by association and quite often works off the image already created and crafted by that celebrity. The risk however is that any negative impact to that celebrity creates collateral damage for the company, and a long-term association is difficult to quickly unwind...

Thursday, December 03, 2009

KPMG Global Business Outlook Validates Current Optimism and Confidence

KPMG recently released its Global Business Outlook Survey on global manufacturing and services. And it has good news for the world economy and some unexpected surprises.

Overall, the survey indicates that, with manufacturing and service sectors getting more confident, there are robust growth prospects for the world economy over the next 12 months...

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Deloitte Versus KPMG in Dubai World Saga

Just in the last few days, Dubai World (DW) shocked investors all across the world in announcing that it will take steps to seek a six month standstill period on payments of interest and principal on $59 billion of its outstanding debt. This terse and surprising announcement on late Thursday November 25, 2009, the eve of a national holiday in Dubai, spooked stockmarkets all over the globe, with Asian and European markets reacting immediately on open with a 3% drop, before recovering somewhat over the day on Friday...

Monday, November 23, 2009

Ernst and Young’s Top Entrepreneurs Maintain Vision Despite Tough Conditions

Entrepreneurs are hardy folks. Undeterred by current circumstances, they are entirely focused on their vision and a rosier tomorrow.

And in this deep and difficult recession, Ernst & Young found that entrepreneur-driven companies are still looking for growth and opportunity in these tough times by adapting their operating methods to set themselves up for market leadership when the economy does turn to the upside...

Monday, November 16, 2009

Deloitte Finds 2009 Holiday Shoppers Will Use A Lot More Social Media

Deloitte’s recently published 24th Annual Holiday Survey of retail spending and trends vindicates what you are likely seeing all around you. Consumers are expected to increasingly use social media for their holiday shopping this year...

A Wake-up Call For America

We saw this on the Grant Thornton home page, and the title was so tantalizing, it was too good not to dig in and blog about it.

This recently released study by David Weild and Edward Kim indicates that a sharp fall in US publicly listed companies is generally driving a depression in US stock markets and further, that it has inhibited economic recovery, impaired the job market and undermined U.S.competitiveness. The deep underlying cause for this – severe changes to the market structure over the last twenty years...

Monday, November 09, 2009

Checkout Our “The Best Of “Twitter Lists – Love Your DM or RT

Twitter just released its latest exciting functionality - Twitter Lists, and we think it’s awesome and very timely.

It allows us to curate who we think are the most appropriate Tweeters to follow in our niche space of The Big Four Firms, accounting, finance, tax, jobs and related topics...

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Top Companies in Deloitte’s 2009 Tech Fast 500 Sport Phenomenal Sales Growth

Recently, Deloitte released its 2009 Technology Fast 500 Rankings, an annual ranking of the fastest growing technology, media, telecommunications, life sciences and clean technology companies in North America...

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Huron Consulting Group Q3-2009 Operations Strong, Shares Zoom

Huron Consulting Group Inc. (NASDAQ: HURN) just reported its Q3-2009 results, with revenues of $172.2 million increasing 2.1% from $168.7 million in Q3-2008 and up sequentially from $165.8 million in Q2-2009. However, more importantly, Huron took a $106.0 million non-cash pretax goodwill impairment charge, about 20% of the total goodwill balance of $506.5 million as of June 30, 2009. In addition, there were restructuring and restatement charges of $15.1 million. The GAAP loss per share including the aforementioned charges was $(3.16) in Q3-2009 compared to diluted earnings per share of $0.12 in Q3 2008...

Capgemini Q3-2009 Revenue Down 9%, But Confirms 7% Operating Margin for 2009

Capgemini just reported its Q3-2009 financial results with revenues of EUR 1,946 million, which was 9.0% below Q3-2008 revenues of EUR 2,098 million on constant exchange rates. On a reported basis revenues were 7.3% lower. Capgemini attributed this to a decline in the economic environment, and a sharp reduction in corporate IT spending...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

All Big Four Firms Make The World’s Top 50 Most Attractive Employers List

We have blogged earlier about Universum, the employer branding company, particularly on their MBA and undergraduate surveys of top employers. The Big Four firms, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Accenture typically make the top ranks in their surveys.

Big Four Firms Dominate UK’s Large Cap Market, Is Big Three Possible?

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC), the UK’s independent regulator responsible for promoting confidence in corporate reporting and governance just published its Fourth Progress Report on the implementation of the MPG recommendations on Promoting Choice in the UK Audit Market.

While the report generally deals with progress on a number of FRC’s key strategic initiatives, there is a very interesting analysis on the concentration of the auditing market in the UK which is dominated by the Big Four firms, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers....

Monday, October 26, 2009

Deloitte Revenues Grow 1% Local Currency, Now Just Behind PricewaterhouseCoopers

Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, the global firm, just came out with its fiscal 2009 revenues for the year ending May 31, 2009. 2009 full year global revenue was US$26.1 billion, an actual increase in local currency terms of 1%, but a drop of 4.9% in US dollar terms from 2008. The tough economic climate and appreciating US dollar were the two main factors in 2009 which impacted Deloitte as much as it did other Big Four firms...

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Our Twitter Feed Ranked as Top Five for Accounting Jobs by Dow Jones WSJ

We were recently, and unexpectedly, surprised by our ranking by the well respected as one of the “The Top Five Twitter Feeds for Job Hunters in Accounting”. We are thankful to FINS for recognizing our Twitter and web efforts towards the Big Four firms alumni community...

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Asia Pacific Uber Rich Suffer A Lot In 2008, But Roar Back Quickly

We have blogged earlier about the fascinating results of the 2008 Capgemini Merrill Lynch Global Wealth report, where high net worth individuals (HNWIs – net assets greater than US$1 million) and ultra-high net worth individuals (Ultra HNWIs – net assets greater than US$30 million), the uber-rich of the world, lost a cool $8 trillion of wealth from 2007 to 2008...

Monday, October 12, 2009

PwC FY 2009 Revenues Rise Modestly From FY 2008 Despite Tough Environment

PricewaterhouseCoopers just released its FY 2009 global revenues for the year ending June 30, 2009, which came in at US$26.2 billion, a 7.1% decline from the US$28.2 billion in FY 2008 in US dollar terms. However, on local currency terms FY 2009 revenues were actually higher than FY 2008 by a modest 0.2%. These results were clearly impacted by two large macro factors. The global economic crisis put a sudden halt to the multi-year annual growth in revenues as clients withheld spending on professional services. The other impact was FX, as the appreciating dollar over the reporting period resulted in lower US dollars for each unit of local currency leading to a reduction in revenue on US dollar terms from FY 2008 to FY 2009...

Friday, October 09, 2009

Deloitte Finds Business Tribalization Gathering Momemtum, Still Ways To Go

Tribalization of Business?

Really??!! Are we going a few hundred years back in time?

It really appears so. Social media is here to stay and becoming more mainstream each day, and smart businesses better adjust to this new reality....

We've moved. Click here to go to the full post at the new Big Four Blog at!

SEC’s Strategic Plan Seen to Support IFRS Transition and PCAOB

The Securities and Exchange Commission just released its 2010-2015 Strategic Plan with some broad objectives to focus on securities compliance fostering and enforcement. The US SEC has been under considerable attack since it missed one of the world’s largest $60 billion Ponzi schemes operated by Bernard Madoff. Apparently, there were five particular instances over the years where the SEC could have caught Madoff had they pursued either their own processes or followed through on tips provided to them. Refocusing on enforcement is clearly goal number one...