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Discuss Whether the Current International Regulatory Environment for the Auditing Profession Is Robust Enough to Ensure That the External Auditors of Listed Companies Provide Reports to Owners and Investors Which Are

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Discuss whether the current international regulatory environment for the auditing profession is robust enough to ensure that the external auditors of listed companies provide reports to owners and investors which are sufficiently independent to serve the public interest.

Introduction
As we will discover, the topic posed above is a complex one, which has many arguments both in favour and against the stability of the present regulatory environment in ensuring that the audits which auditors produce are indeed impartial enough to satisfy the public interest. We will first proceed in identifying the term “public interest” in light of the accounting and auditing profession. From this will be an explanation of what is the current regulatory environment, which will then lead us to arguments for and against auditors retaining their independence. Relevant sources will be used, including some concerning current thinking on the matter. From this a suitable conclusion can be made.
What is meant by “the public interest” in relation to the (accounting and) audit profession?
The International Federation of Accountants (IFAC 2010) soundly defines the public interest as any individual or entity which is affected by the work of the accountancy profession: in other words, society as a whole. What is expected of the accountancy profession in relation to the public is the safeguarding of particular interests. These interests may consist of providing accurate financial information, ensuring it is of a uniform standard, organizational success and so on.
Thomadakis (2009) has a similar view in that the work of accountants needs to be both precise, and comparable in order to maintain and develop a robust economy. Due to the way in which statements are drawn up in one organization, is uniform in others, highly increases the need for precision and comparability to be of a reliable...

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