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UK's FRC shifts towards greater corporate review transparency

The Financial Reporting Council has published summaries of its corporate reporting reviews with companies' consent.

In a move towards greater transparency in its corporate reporting review work, UK regulator the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) published Friday for the first time summaries of its findings of recently closed substantive reviews of corporate reports and accounts.

The change comes after the UK government earlier in March issued a consultation on a range of audit and corporate governance proposals. They include allowing the FRC to publish summaries without the consent of companies, once sufficient safeguards around confidential information are in place. This move is in line with a recommendation of Sir John Kingman’s Independent Review of the FRC. Currently, the FRC’s summaries can legally only be disclosed with the consent of the relevant companies.

The FRC explained that previously it published the names of companies reviewed, whether a full review was conducted, and whether substantiative correspondence had been entered into, without providing further details of review findings.

The FRC conducts more than 200 corporate reporting reviews annually to assess whether company reports and accounts comply with relevant accounting and reporting requirements.

— Oliver Rowe (Oliver.Rowe@aicpa-cima.com) is an FM magazine senior editor.