Accounting and bookkeeping sector adds 17,800 jobs in May. In the biggest single-month gain since the recession, the accounting industry added almost 18,000 new jobs in May, bringing the total headcount to 926,300, a 29-month high. In fact, accounting was one of the few bright spots in an otherwise disappointing jobs report.
Expansion through the downturn. Industry research firm IBISWorld identifies the top 10 fastest growing industries from 2000 to 2016. “After compiling the list of fastest growing industries, there were some apparent trends,” explained IBISWorld Senior Analyst Casey Thormahlen. “Each industry on the list experienced growth as a result of one or more of four drivers: Internet growth, environmental issues, cost cutting and evolving technology.” 1. Internet Growth It is no surprise that voice over internet protocol (VoIP), e-commerce and online auctions, and Internet publishing and broadcasting top the list. Each is being supported by the increasing popularity of the Internet for communication and business transactions.
Despite economic recovery, many firms seem unable to capitalize on new opportunities. Click here to join the Tax Season 2011 survey; get the results. Tax accountants are finishing the 2011 busy season with stronger results than they expected, but – perhaps surprisingly — not as strong as last year, despite somewhat improved economic conditions. CPA Trendlines research suggests that many accounting firms may have over-reacted to the 2007 market crash by cutting staff and billing rates, leaving them unprepared to capitalize on the opportunities of the 2011 recovery.
But no recovery until 2012. via AICPA After a dramatic drop last quarter, CPA executives regained modest optimism in the past three months about prospects for the U.S. economy but believe the recovery will be slow and they are cautious about plans for expansion and hiring, according to the latest AICPA/UNC Quarterly Economic Outlook Survey. Twenty-eight percent of CPAs serving in executive positions expressed optimism about the U.S. economy in the fourth quarter, up 7 percentage points from 21 percent who were optimistic in the third quarter. Pessimists were 29 percent, a decline of 11 percentage points from the prior quarter. Most CPA executives, 43 percent, were neutral on the economy. A majority of 61 percent do not expect business [...]
Accounting and bookkeeping sector hits new low. Accounting and Bookkeeping, All Employees, in Thousands As the nation’s overall unemployment rate ticked upward to 9.8% in November from 9.6%, the number of jobs in the accounting and bookkeeping sector declined by another 1,600 to a preliminary seasonally-adjusted 876,000, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It’s a new post-crash low.
Zero employment growth: “one of the best performances in years.” via NFIB The National Federation of Independent Business Index of Small Business Optimism gained 2.7 points in October rising to 91.7, not a huge move, but at least a decent jump, perhaps anticipating an acceleration in economic activity. Still, the Index remains in recession territory. Consumer spending and consumer sentiment remain weak, indicating that top line growth on Main Street will remain sluggish. The profit picture did improve, supported by increased reports of quarter-to-quarter positive sales trends. However, both sales Index components are still very negative historically but are heading in the right direction. Employment Average employment growth per firm was 0 (zero) in October, one of the best performances [...]
78% see no recovery for two years. via TD Bank Sixty-nine percent of chief financial officers and other corporate finance managers at mid-sized businesses say that it’s the intense challenge of managing cash flow that worries them the most, according to a survey conducted by TD Bank. Proper capital allocation and cash flow management will also be next year’s top financial management priorities for 41 percent of respondents.
‘Dealing with the recession has not been pleasant or easy.’ Steve Erickson www.SteveEricksonLLC.com The “Great Recession” has reduced the spending of countless millions that has a negative impact on the clients we serve. As a result, our revenues have been relatively flat or decreasing, while our costs have continued to rise. This trend will have to be reversed if we are to remain viable and able to serve our clients successfully. Here are some of the major trends: Pricing has moved substantially from a cost-plus model, in which a multiple of a person’s hourly salary was charged for services to a fixed fee, for many of the services we provide at a time when regulatory agencies are imposing ever increasing [...]
Stalled economy separates the quick and the dead. With marginal clients falling by the wayside, it may be time for accountants to rethink how they do business, according to Dave Pollack, vice president of sales at AccountantsWorld, makers of the Power Practice cloud solution. “The people who are proactive and seizing new opportunities are flourishing,” he says in this interview at annual the Illinois CPA society trade show. What’s YOUR forecast for the economy? Join the survey, get the results. Find out what the profession thinks.
Here’s what CPAs should expect from their state association in these tough times. Elaine Weiss, chief executive of the Illinois CPA Society, says the recession makes society membership never more important. She acknowledges “the economy is tough” and says it’s essential that associations give “our members the guidance to run an effective business and then serve their clients.” “Most important,” Weiss says during a break at the Midwest Accounting and Finance Showcase in suburban Chicago, “you have to help your members who are in economic crisis.” See more clips from the interview here:
New approaches to old challenges. Source: Accounting Office Management & Administration Report via www.cpaleadership.com. To subscribe to AOM&AR, go to www.ioma.com. Chicago-based CEB & Company LLC was formed in 2008 when Patrick O’Malley and William M. Kwit split off from their previous firm over differences regarding business and staff development. The firm now has two partners and nine employees. But O’Malley and Kwit couldn’t have chosen a tougher time to go out on their own — the beginning the Great Recession. How are they doing? O’Malley says says they’ve taken some new approaches to old challenges. Keys to CEB’s success include: Training. The firm developed a significantly better staff-training program that emphasizes an open exchange of ideas and provides staff [...]
CPAs could help help avert the next financial catastrophe by joining the new multi-disciplinary movement for governance, risk and compliance. by Rick Telberg Not too long ago, CPA Norman Marks was sitting through a conference on the emerging issues in governance, risk and compliance (GRC). He listened for two days as dozens of speakers and panelists — consultants, internal auditors, independent accountants, vendors, lawyers, and others — sought to define “GRC.” Marks counted 23 different definitions. So what, exactly, is GRC? And why do corporate finance CPAs need to care? You only need to go as far as the front pages of the newspaper to understand why GRC is surging as a new corporate discipline and professional practice. If the Wall [...]
Signed into law by President Obama on March 18, the HIRE Act has the potential to be a direct boost to a business’ bottom line because it will both help employers and at the same time encourage job creation. by Gary Butler President and CEO of ADP Far too many Americans are currently unemployed, yet many small- and medium-sized businesses remain at the cusp of resuming hiring. It is hoped that the HIRE Act will serve as a catalyst that will help our economy recover. I believe this jobs bill is a good piece of legislation that comes at a very opportune time. The HIRE Act provides incentives for businesses to hire new employees sooner rather than later. The incentives [...]
No fee growth across all sizes of firm By Marc Rosenberg, CPA The mantra in 2009 was “flat is up,” which meant that CPA firms would gladly settle for 2009 revenues that simply held firm at the 2008 level, given the full brunt of the recession. According to a survey we conducted of CPA firms across the country, firms got their wish: The surveyed firms showed a 0.6% increase in annual net fees in 2009 vs. 2008 – about as flat as it gets. For the past 10 years, we have maintained what we call our “National E-mail Managing Partner Roundtable.” It consists of roughly 100 accomplished managing partners of CPA firms across the country. 54 firms responded in January [...]
Seasonally-adjusted workforce declined to 916,800 in February. That’s 3,600 off from January’s 920,400 headcount, and the February 2008 level of 947,000, according to today’s employment situation report from the Labor Department Bureau of Labor Statistics for the accounting and bookkeeping sector. But February’s decline follows a revised gain in January of 4,600 jobs. Overall, the number of jobs in the U.S. fell by 36,000 last month, and the unemployment rate held steady at 9.7%. The jobs picture was probably hurt by February snowstorms. Still, the rate of job loss may be slowing. Last February, by comparison, the U.S. economy lost 726,000 jobs. Analysts expect the economy to start adding jobs later this year. In the offices of CPA firms, in [...]
World leaders reset agenda for finance strategies. by Rick Telberg In this increasingly globally connected and dependent world, corporate finance executives can glean a few lessons from the World Economic Forum’s meeting of some 2,500 business, government and civic leaders in the Swiss ski resort of Davos last month. This year’s meeting focused on rebalancing the global economy, reforming banking and finance regulation, dealing with climate change and innovating in healthcare. Each of these issues presents challenges and opportunities for accountants and finance managers. In a post-conference summary, McKinsey & Co. analysts cited four mega-trends to emerge this year: 1. Debt and deleveraging — Almost two years since the first signs of a credit crash, several major economies are still [...]
Prospects for Economic Recovery Continue to Recede as Recession Lengthens DURHAM-CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — Expectations among Certified Public Accountant executives for the U.S. economy remained pessimistic in the first quarter as the recovery proved sluggish amid signs of potential growth in manufacturing and a slightly improving outlook for organizations, according to a new nationwide survey conducted by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School. “It is good to see signs of optimism, especially from the manufacturing sector,” said Carol Scott, CPA, AICPA vice president for business, industry and government. “Unfortunately 40 percent of our CPA members in business and industry — chief financial officers, controllers and CPA financial professionals – are [...]