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[The following paragraph was effective for fiscal years ending on or after November 15, 2007. It was amended, effective for audits of fiscal years beginning on or after December 15, 2010. See PCAOB Release No. 2010-004.

Return to the current version.]

9.         The auditor should properly plan the audit of internal control over financial reporting and properly supervise any assistants. When planning an integrated audit, the auditor should evaluate whether the following matters are important to the company's financial statements and internal control over financial reporting and, if so, how they will affect the auditor's procedures -

  • Knowledge of the company's internal control over financial reporting obtained during other engagements performed by the auditor;
  • Matters affecting the industry in which the company operates, such as financial reporting practices, economic conditions, laws and regulations, and technological changes;
  • Matters relating to the company's business, including its organization, operating characteristics, and capital structure;
  • The extent of recent changes, if any, in the company, its operations, or its internal control over financial reporting;
  • The auditor's preliminary judgments about materiality, risk, and other factors relating to the determination of material weaknesses;
  • Control deficiencies previously communicated to the audit committee 8/ or management;
  • Legal or regulatory matters of which the company is aware;
  • The type and extent of available evidence related to the effectiveness of the company's internal control over financial reporting;
  • Preliminary judgments about the effectiveness of internal control over financial reporting;
  • Public information about the company relevant to the evaluation of the likelihood of material financial statement misstatements and the effectiveness of the company's internal control over financial reporting;
  • Knowledge about risks related to the company evaluated as part of the auditor's client acceptance and retention evaluation; and
  • The relative complexity of the company's operations.

Note: Many smaller companies have less complex operations. Additionally, some larger, complex companies may have less complex units or processes. Factors that might indicate less complex operations include: fewer business lines; less complex business processes and financial reporting systems; more centralized accounting functions; extensive involvement by senior management in the day-to-day activities of the business; and fewer levels of management, each with a wide span of control.