Cook, I just had two areas I wanted to follow-up on
MR. COOK: I guess, if you start with a natural aversion to rules and rule-making, you probably can see downsides in codifications and other things, but I don’t have any particular concerns about the principles that are set forth with the exception of I do think the interpretation of the definition of «advocacy» can be taken too broadly and could shut down some communications and activities that are very natural and customary in business relationships that nobody would think of threatening independence. I’m not particularly concerned about that.
COMMISSIONER UNGER: Mr. In your discussion, in response toa question of the Chairman’s about one of the factors that has changed the dynamics of this discussion, you said there was an increase in the magnitude of the consulting business of most of the accounting firms.
MR. But it’s my understanding that the audit services today are in the 30 percent range for the largest firms and that consulting would be half or more of total revenues for those same firms.
COMMISSIONER UNGER: And I think you were saying that the consulting revenues were more substantial, and I guess you’re saying that now, than the auditing revenues.
COMMISSIONER UNGER: Are you concerned or should we be concerned that if we go too far in a particular rule-making that, in fact, will drive the auditing function to be, I guess — what’s the word I’m looking for –disenfranchised, marginalized or to become less of the focus of the firm and that, in fact, the firms will then turn to the more profitable side of the business, the consulting, and we will then truly affect the integrity of the audits because there won’t be any of the Big 5 firms engaged in performing these audits? (más…)