Value of the Audit: A Brief History and the Path Forward

June 16, 2021

Published: The CAQ

Our capital markets are an important engine for driving and maintaining our economic and societal well-being. These markets operate on data, and audited financial statements have long been a critical element of this information dynamic for their accuracy, transparency, and reliability. As investors make investing decisions, they depend on the information they receive from public company management. As a result, investors need—and in fact have long sought—an independent third party to provide assurance on the information provided by company management.

Download Value of the Audit to explore the benefits of an independent audit:  

Examine the importance of well-functioning capital markets to the economy, the historical importance of audited financial statements, and the roles and responsibilities of each key stakeholder in the US financial reporting supply chain.  

Learn about two key cornerstones of audit quality—the expertise and independence of the external public company auditor.  

Understand some of the pitfalls of public policy proposals that seek to apply more stringent requirements on auditor independence to the potential detriment of needed expertise and audit quality.

Explore the growing demand for company-reported information outside of the historical financial statements, and how the independent public company audit construct can be – and in some cases already is – applied to these other key areas of information.  


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