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SEC on Social Media and Investment Manager Advertising

April 16th, 2014

The SEC has issued guidance to assist investment managers in applying Sec. 206(4) of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 to their use of social media. The guidance seeks to assist investment managers in developing compliance policies and procedures reasonably designed to address marketing through social media.

Section 206(4) of the Advisers Act generally prohibits any investment manager from directly or indirectly publishing, circulating or distributing any advertisement which refers, directly or indirectly, to any testimonial of any kind concerning the investment manager or concerning any advice, analysis, report or other service rendered by such investment.

The term “testimonials” includes a “statement of a client’s experience with, or endorsement of, an investment manager.”

Whether public commentary on a social media site is a testimonial depends upon the facts and circumstances relating to the statement. The SEC has stated that an investment manager’s publication of an article by an unbiased third party regarding its investment performance is not a testimonial, unless it includes a statement of a client’s experience with or endorsement of the investment manager. The SEC also has stated that an investment manager’s advertisement that includes a partial client list that does no more than identify certain clients of the investment manager cannot be viewed either as a statement of a client’s experience with, or endorsement of, the investment manager and therefore is not a testimonial.

Read more.

CalCPA Awards Accounting Education Masters Scholarships

April 16th, 2014

Congratulations to the recipients of CalCPA’s State Accounting Education Masters Scholarship Program:

  • Michael D. Doyen: Cal Poly State University San Luis Obispo
  • Mark W. Coltrin: UC Irvine
  • Timothy P. Ryan: Golden Gate University
  • Julia Delcarson: University of Southern California
  • Christopher Dickson: University of Southern California

CBA Recruiting Investigative CPAs

April 16th, 2014

The California Board of Accountancy is recruiting investigative CPAs, who, under general supervision, perform complex technical investigations with a high degree of independence. These CPAs may act in a lead capacity to direct or review the work of other investigative CPAs, as well as provide technical support to legal counsel during litigation. Investigative CPAs also are required to provide expert testimony at administrative disciplinary proceedings and do other related work. Positions are available statewide.

Learn more and check out the application.

FTB’s Most Common Audit Issues

April 16th, 2014

The following are some of the most common tax audit issues affecting personal income taxpayers:

Like-kind Exchange (IRC Sec. 1031)
Audits related to IRC Sec. 1031 continue to find noncompliance in the following areas:

  • Gain computation errors (taxable boot due to debt netting, non-exchange expense items included in the computation).
  • Including the cost of property improvements made after the exchange closed in the exchange (boot) calculation.
  • Withdrawing cash out of the proceeds from the relinquished property.

Other State Tax Credit
The FTB uses third-party data to verify tax payments were made to other states, and to disallow credits claimed to those states which do not have a reciprocal agreement with California.

Head of Household Filing Status
Common errors include:

  • The qualifying individual’s income exceeds the gross income test of $3,700.
  • Taxpayers who do not meet the requirements to be considered unmarried or considered not an RDP.

See the FTB’s full list of common audit issues.

New Employment Credit Now Available

April 16th, 2014

The New Employment Credit is a new tax credit available to businesses that hire qualified full-time employees on or after Jan. 1, 2014. Some of the requirements to claim the credit include:

  • The qualified full-time employee works in the Designated Geographic Area.
  • The qualified employer obtains a credit reservation from us for each qualified full-time employee.
  • Another provision of the statute requires a qualified employer to complete an annual certification of employment with respect to each qualified full-time employee hired in the previous taxable year.

Learn about the other requirements that also must be met.

Upcoming Foundation Events: More Changes for Private Company Reporting Ahead

April 16th, 2014

CalCPA Members Eidson, Fraser Win Elijah Watt Sells Award

March 31st, 2014

The AICPA’s 2013 Elijah Watt Sells Award is given to candidates who have obtained a cumulative average score above 95.50 across all four sections of the Uniform CPA Exam, completed testing during the 2013 calendar year and passed all four sections of the exam on their first attempt. Among the 55 candidates who met the criteria to receive the award were CalCPA members:

  • Ryan K. Eidson, U.C. Berkeley Extension; Francis Ford Coppola Winery (Napa)
  • Adam Fraser, UCLA Extension; Transom Capital Group (Los Angeles).

The award was established by the AICPA in 1923 to recognize outstanding performance on the CPA Exam. Sells was one of the country’s first CPAs, was active in the establishment of the AICPA and played a key role helping to advance professional education in the profession.

Go online for more information on the Uniform CPA Examination.

Renew by May 1 and Receive a FREE 4-Hour Ethics Course

March 31st, 2014

By renewing your CalCPA membership, you will keep your access to advocacy in Sacramento, leadership opportunities, news and trends, exclusive discounts, continuing education and a network of more than 40,000 CalCPA members. Plus, renew today and receive a FREE 4-hour ethics course, valued at $190.

CAMICO Tip of the Month: Preventing Data Breaches

March 31st, 2014

After conducting a risk assessment of its computer system, a firm should develop a written information security plan that:

  • Outlines the specific ways the firm will protect data;
  • Sets forth policies, procedures and staff responsibilities, including what staff members are not allowed to do, and what they are required to do and report;
  • Covers areas such as the Internet, social media, email usage, and record retention and destruction; and
  • Details the reporting and other requirements of the states in question and the state agencies to which breaches are to be reported. Some states require firms to be compliant with the state’s privacy laws if the firm has the privacy data of a resident of that state. Some states require a written security plan by law.

Teach the written plan to staff. New laws or regulations should be reflected in changes to the plan. Training sessions to update staff on such changes will make the plan a dynamic, living document that staff uses and relies upon.

For more information and guidance about CPA firm insurance issues, call CAMICO at (800) 652-1772 or go online.

Women’s Leadership Forum April 25: Develop, Inspire, Celebrate

March 31st, 2014

Learn leadership ideas, trends and practical guidance that will make a difference in your professional life. Topics include executive presence, working within generational differences, making a difference on nonprofit and corporate boards and more. We’ll also present our Women to Watch Awards, which recognize women for their outstanding contributions to the profession and communities.

Learn more and register.


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