The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) has unveiled an array of website transparency enhancements that allow investors, audit committee members, and other stakeholders to better access and understand data from PCAOB inspection reports. Six new search filters, including Part I.A deficiency rate, are now live on the PCAOB’s Firm Inspection Reports page to help users analyse and compare more than 3,700 inspection reports. 

Commenting on this, PCAOB chair, Erica Williams, said: “PCAOB inspection reports provide investors, audit committees, and potential clients with important information they can use to make informed decisions. By making that information easier to find and compare, these new tools will empower users to hold firms accountable for producing high-quality audits”  

Previously, visitors to the PCAOB website could only search inspection reports by four filters: firm name, country/geography, year when a report was published (i.e., approved by the Board), and whether a report includes public quality control criticisms. 

The enhancements released today add six new filters that can be applied to PCAOB inspection reports. The filters are:

  • Inspection type: Users can filter according to whether a firm inspection report falls into the ‘annual’ or ‘triennial’ inspection frequency category for the inspection year.
  • Total issuer audit clients: Users can now get a better and more immediate sense of the size of triennially inspected audit firms by sorting inspection reports according to the number of audit clients that firms had, as determined at the outset of the inspection. 
  • Part I.A deficiency rate: Users can now sort inspection reports according to the percentage of audits with Part I.A deficiencies. Part I.A of inspection reports discusses deficiencies, if any, that were of such significance that PCAOB staff believed the audit firm, at the time it issued its audit report(s), had not obtained sufficient appropriate audit evidence to support its opinion on the public company’s financial statements and/or internal control over financial reporting. 
  • Specific global network: Users can now refine search results so they include only firms that belong to a specific global audit firm network. 
  • Inspection year: Users can now filter inspection reports according to the year that the PCAOB’s inspectors completed the inspection, not just the year when the report was published. 
  • Audits reviewed: Users can search inspection reports by number of issuer audits that the PCAOB reviewed as part of its inspection.

Additionally, users can now download the entire data set into three formats: CSV, XML, and JSON. These three formats maximise the ability of users to integrate PCAOB data into third-party applications for further analysis.  

PCAOB director of registration and inspections, George Botic, added: “Each year, the hard work of the PCAOB’s inspection staff yields an extraordinary amount of useful information for investors and others. 

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“We are strongly committed to making more of this information more accessible and insightful for PCAOB stakeholders, and we are pleased that today’s website enhancements further that commitment.”