Inside these posts: Accounting

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Morningstar switches accounting firms

Morningstar Inc., a leading fund and investment research firm, switched accounting firms, according to a securities filing on Monday.

Chicago-based Morningstar said it dismissed Ernst & Young LLP and hired KPMG LLP effective on Feb. 28, 2011. Get the full story »

Ernst & Young set to be charged in Lehman collapse

New York prosecutors are poised to file civil fraud charges against Ernst & Young for its alleged role in the collapse of Lehman Brothers, saying the Big Four accounting firm stood by while the investment bank misled investors about its financial health, people familiar with the matter said.

State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo is close to filing the case, which would mark the first time a major accounting firm was targeted for its role in the financial crisis. The suit stems from transactions Lehman allegedly carried out to make its risk appear lower than it actually was. Get the full story »

SEC votes to crack down on ‘window dressing’

Securities regulators voted unanimously on Friday to propose rules for companies to disclose more information about their short-term borrowings.

The agency is trying to crack down on financial companies that use accounting gimmicks to bolster their balance sheets, particularly at the end of a quarter. Get the full story »

Deloitte & Touche names new CEO and chairman

Deloitte & Touche Chairman and CEO Stephen Van Arsdell. (AP)

Stephen C. Van Arsdell, of Naperville, has been named chairman and chief executive officer of Deloitte & Touche LLP, the accounting, auditing, capital markets and risk advisory subsidiary of Deloitte LLP.

Van Arsdell, 60, will be based in Deloitte’s New York office. He most recently served as deputy chief executive officer of Deloitte & Touche with responsibility for the professional practice network, and succeeds Nick Tommasino, who has served as chairman and CEO of Deloitte & Touche since 2006. Get the full story »

American Apparel’s future is in jeopardy

An American Apparel clothing store in Los Angeles. (Lawrence K. Ho/Los Angeles Times)

Casual clothing chain American Apparel, suffering a steep sales slump and manufacturing problems, warned Tuesday that it may also default on loans and may not be able to stay in business.

The Los Angeles-based clothing maker, which in Illinois has locations in Chicago, Evanston, Oak Brook and Schaumburg, said it may default on loan agreements with its lenders, cited ongoing weakness in its business.

If that happens, the company said it may not have sufficient liquidity to stay in business for the next 12 months. Get the full story »

SEC files for settlement in Navistar fraud case

The Securities and Exchange Commission has asked a federal court judge to sign off on a consent order that would settle a years-long accounting fraud scandal that led to Warrenville-based Navistar’s delisting on the New York Stock Exchange in 2007.

The settlement agreement, first announced last October, was opened to the public for the first time Thursday, and names five former and current Navistar employees who allegedly engaged in fraudulent and improper accounting practices that led the company to overstate its pre-tax income by approximately $137 million from 2001 to 2005. The company manufactures and markets commercial trucks, school buses, diesel engines and related parts. Get the full story »

Supreme Court tweaks part of Sarbanes-Oxley

The Supreme Court largely affirmed Monday the legitimacy of an accounting regulator created by a post-Enron antifraud law, striking down only a minor provision of  it.

The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board was established in 2002 as part of the Sarbanes-Oxley law, which Congress passed after the Enron Corp.  scandal exposed a wave of accounting chicanery used by some companies to pump up their stock prices during the late-1990s bull market. Get the full story »