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March 31, 2014

Malaysian auditors warned over poor record keeping

Malaysian audit practitioners have been exposed for their lack of proper audit document and working paper keeping, according to the Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA) 2009-2013 practise review report.

The MIA said its reviewers found that "inadequate attention is given to writing down audit procedures performed, the findings made by the auditor with respect to the sufficiency and appropriateness of the audit evidence gathered and the conclusions reached by the auditor."

There were also cases of no audit planning documentation being prepared, despite ISA 300(9) stating that auditors should develop and document an overall audit plan.

Additionally, the MIA found a lack of formal policies and procedures on professional independence requirements, noting that period written representation from professional staff would facilitate more effective monitoring of compliance with the independence requirements.

The report also found that partners’ involvement in the audit at the planning stage was often not clearly evident, and firms were not maintaining any record on professional development for professional staff. There was also no documentation on staff performance evaluation.

The purpose of the MIA report was to identify all weaknesses found in the review and look at ways of addressing them.

It featured reviews of 639 firms. Of these just 8% were rated "satisfactory", 48% were rated "assurance to be provided" and 44% required a follow up review.

Of those that had follow up reviews, 50% failed the second time, and were referred to the investigation committee.The MIA has over 30,000 members and is the regulatory body for the profession in the country.

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