As accountancy firms seek to grow by offering a wider range of professional services -other than financial audit- regulators, investors and industry stakeholders keep a vigilant eye on the implications this unstoppable trend might have for ethical standards, auditor independence and good practice.
The Accountant, in association with sister title International Accounting Bulletin, have produced a new data set aimed at measuring the balance between non-audit services (NAS) and auditing fees earned by accountancy firms.
Among US networks the four top performers are Russel Bedford International and BDO with the lowest percentage of NAS, 42% and 45% respectively, of total fees earned in fiscal year 2014.
Baker Tilly International and HLB International follow in third and fourth position, both with 58% of fees coming from services other than audit.
Deloitte, top earning firm with $14.9bn in revenues, slides to spot number eighteen of the 20 firms surveyed, showing the greatest dependence upon NAS with 71% of total earnings among the Big Four.
PwC, the second largest firm by revenue, shows a more balanced proportion between services compared to the other Big Four peers, although it falls to the sixth position as 59% of the total $11.7bn fees came from NAS.
EY, with total revenues of $9.9bn of which 64% represents NAS fees, goes down from the third to the thirtieth spot. And KPMG ranks in the fifteenth position, with 66% of the total $6.9bn in revenues cashed in by providing NAS.
ANTEA Alliance leads in the category of accounting associations with 32% of NAS, the lowest overall NAS fee dependence, including networks.
Access the data:
Non-audit services monitor: United States – Data