Update of PCAOB Standard-Setting Projects

By Rachel DiDio, CPA, Victor Peña, CPA, CGMA, Jonathan Zuckerman, CPA, Ioanna Vavasis, CPA,
and Edward Lentini, CPA

In order to enhance industry-wide auditing and professional standards, and to improve investor protection, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) maintains and continuously updates its standard-setting agenda. The purpose of the agenda is to present and prioritize topics and emerging audit issues that the PCAOB aims to address. The PCAOB will either aim to set new standards or conduct further research on any issues with the existing standards to address each agenda topic.

The standard-setting projects that the PCAOB has on its agenda are categorized as either short-term or mid-term projects. Short-term projects are projects in which Board action (e.g., proposal or adoption) is expected to take place within 12 months. Mid-term projects are projects in which Board action is not expected to take place within 12 months. Once a mid-term project advances and Board action could feasibly happen within 12 months, it is moved to short-term projects.

The PCAOB posted revisions to the agenda in November, which included the following changes:

  • One standard-setting project was adopted by the PCAOB.
  • One standard-setting project was added to the mid-term projects listing.
  • One rulemaking project was proposed.
  • One research project update was added.

Summarized below are the revisions to the PCAOB’s standard-setting, rulemaking and research projects.

Standard-Setting Projects

  • AS 2310, The Auditor’s Use of Confirmation, was adopted by the PCAOB in 2023. This standard aims to update the requirements of auditor’s use of confirmations to keep up with changes in modern technology and to more closely align with the PCAOB’s risk assessment standards, as covered in our recently published article.

  • AS 2510, Auditing Inventories, was added to the mid-term projects listing. The PCAOB is considering revisions in order to reflect changes that have taken place in the auditing environment.

Rulemaking Projects

Two amendments were proposed to PCAOB Rule 3502, Responsibility Not to Knowingly or Recklessly Contribute to Violations. These amendments are as follows:

  1. Change the standard of conduct for associated persons’ contributory liability from recklessness to negligence.

  2. Amend the rule to state that the associated person who contributed to a violation does not have to be an associated person of a registered firm that commits the primary violation.

Research Projects

Communication of Critical Audit Matters was added to the research agenda. The PCAOB has continued to demonstrate their commitment to enhancing industry-wide standards and protection of the public through their in-depth updates of the agenda.

For the PCAOB’s standard-setting, research and rulemaking projects, please click here.

Contact Us

For more information about upcoming PCAOB projects, please contact your client audit team or any of the following: