Financial Accounting Blog

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Auditor Independence. Judge Rules Against Ernst & Young. Would this issue between an accounting firm and Peoplesoft been an issue prior to Enron and the other corporate scandals?
The judge was especially critical of Edmund Coulson, the Ernst partner who was in charge of independence issues, saying he kept no written records and had failed to learn enough facts before saying the relationships between Ernst and PeopleSoft were proper, according to the paper. Coulson was chief accountant of the SEC before he joined Ernst in 1991.

Ernst & Young had argued that it was merely a PeopleSoft customer, but, the judge reportedly noted that the firm had billed itself in marketing materials as an "implementation partner" of PeopleSoft, and that it had earned $500 million over five years from installing PeopleSoft programs at other companies.