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MPs ask accountancy watchdog to consider widening investigation into PwC

An influential group of MPs have called on the accountancy watchdog to consider widening its investigation into PwC’s auditing practices after slapping the firm with a record fine.
The work and pensions select committee has written to the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) demanding an explanation as to why it imposed sanctions on PwC over the auditing of BHS accounts before it was sold by Sir Philip Green for ?1.
The FRC confirmed on Tuesday that it had taken action in relation to the BHS audit for the year to Aug 30 2014 following a two-year investigation.
Former PwC partner Steve Denison was fined half a million pounds by the FRC, while the accountancy giant was hit with a ?10m penalty.
Both PwC and Mr Denison had their fines reduced, to ?6.5m and ?325,000 respectively, after settling early and admitting wrongdoing.
How BHS was pushed to the edge
Mr Denison has also agreed to remove his name from the register of statutory auditors, and will not apply to re-enter the register for 15 years.  
Frank Field, the committee chairman, said it was now pressing the FRC over whether further investigations were needed for other PwC audits.
He said: “This is undoubtedly a good first move. It reopens the key question of whether BHS was in fact a ‘going concern’ when it was jettisoned for ?1.
“As we know, that sale – which came just six days after PwC signed off the books – threw 11,000 people out of work and permanently reduced the pensions of 20,000 people.”
MPs ask accountancy watchdog to consider widening investigation into PwC

Frank Field, chairman of the work and pensions select committee
The sanctions come after the FRC launched an investigation into the BHS auditing work in June 2016 following “suspicion of misconduct”.
Mr Dension, who was the lead partner on the BHS audit, left PwC last week following more than three decades at the firm.
The FRC said that PwC has also agreed to review and amend its policies and procedures to ensure that audits of all non-listed high risk or high-profile companies, including private companies which employ at least 10,000 individuals in the UK, are subject to an engagement quality control review.
The firm will monitor its Leeds office and provide the watchdog with detailed annual reports about the office for the next three years.
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