Since the financial crisis really took its hold over the summer and autumn of 2008, there has been increased public focus on the enterprises and their financial statements. Many enterprises have gone bankrupt since the beginning of the financial crisis. A development which places severe demands on internal and external players in the enterprises. One of the players is the auditor or the audit business who/which plays an important role as representative of the public. This is a role which has become more important concurrently with the globalisation and increased investments across borders. The importance of auditor's opinion on financial statements giving a true and fair view, including an auditor's report, has increased since this is something an investor can include in the decision‐making process of a given investment. The conflict of interests between the owners and management of an enterprise creates a need for supervision of the management's performance from the owner's part. An enterprise makes financial reporting on a regular basis, including financial statements. If the management presents the financial statements in accordance with the Danish Financial Statements Act, it is a requirement that the enterprise is to have its financial statements audited by one or several auditors. An auditor's report helps strengthening the intended users' trust in the financial statements. The auditor shall in an auditor's report state an opinion or refuse to state an opinion. This depends on the effect of a qualification on the opinion. If there is a qualification which auditor would like to inform the intended users of, this is to be stated in a paragraph under emphasis of matters. Since emphasis of matters may not affect auditor's opinion, this paragraph is placed after the opinion paragraph. The concept of going concern is defined as the enterprise's ability to continue its operation. Going concern is one of the underlying assumptions for the preparation of financial statements in accordance with the Danish Financial Statements Act. Auditor's responsibility is to obtain sufficient and appropriate evidence of management's use of the going concern assumption being appropriate. Based on this, auditor has to assess whether material uncertainty exists in relation to going concern, and in case state the consequences for the opinion. In the analysis, 26 auditor's reports have been examined. 17 out of 26 auditor's reports contained misstatements. One incident has been observed in which an auditor's report had an incorrect opinion. Auditor had given a qualified opinion as to the annual report which was presented on the assumption of going concern, but concluded that the annual report gives a true and fair view. In addition, it has been observed that the auditors in certain situations have tried to compensate for incomplete management commentaries by describing this under emphasis of matters – in situations where it is actually a clarification or interpretation of the management commentaries. In these situations, the auditors should have made a qualified statement concerning incomplete or insufficient statements by management concerning going concern. The audit firms are responsible for establishing a quality assurance system which ensures that the auditor's reports issued are appropriate in the circumstances. This comprises, among other things, a quality review of risky cases which imply going concern considerations. The review is to ensure that the auditor's report is phrased in accordance with applicable law. The analysis indicates that the quality review among audit firms in relation to the auditor's reports issued has not been performed sufficiently as the misstatements have not been detected during the quality review.
|Educations||MSc in Auditing, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis|
|Number of pages||111|