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Auditors - what value does external audit really provide?

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It's not like we want to find misstatements. I feel like we are just documenters purchased to meet SEC requirements. Wondering if there's a bigger picture I'm missing.

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Having performed accounting advisory work, I've seen first hand how just the existence of auditors acts as a deterrent for overly aggressive accounting positions (i.e., earnings management and borderline unethical behavior). It's a necessary evil for the capital markets to function. Probably not the answer you're looking for, but it's the truth.

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Enron

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It's really just compliance work, that's why sometimes our work can feel unrewarding/dull. But I guess you could say the bigger picture is the public trust. Somebody's gotta do it, the public (in most cases not even that) is trusting us to do it well?

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It is a job just like any other job in our society, imagine a world without external auditors, capital market wouldn't function just like hospital wouldn't function without medical billing professionals and DMV with their clerks, someone has to do it.

Regardless of what they actually provide, they are required for many things like getting loans and iPos. Without audits, no funding.

Third party assurance is critical anywhere you have asymmetrical information. All the QA companies in the world are really doing similar work, they just don't call it 'audit'.

Third parties can't trust companies without some compliance work.

Honestly I wish there were more TPA. You buy products everyday - but who's to say the Chinese government isn't adding borax to your noodles unless someone tests it? What do 90% of scientists do all day, except reperform one another's work? Most people are just doing their jobs, not innovating. Even if you left for corporate finance, the end game just shifts to filing the 10K, a regulatory requirement...if you want value-add, go help old people or feed the poor.

Yeah 99% of jobs are just jobs. I don't know why people focus so much on their job defining them. Go volunteer after work .

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