The Landscape of Company-Prepared Information
Like our economy and capital markets, the nature and type of company-prepared information presented to the public is dynamic and has evolved over time. Investors and other stakeholders are looking for more and different information because traditional book value can be an incomplete measure of corporate value in today’s economy. Today’s companies create and measure value in ways that extend far beyond their property, plant, and equipment. This has led many companies to generate public-facing information beyond the traditional financial statements that are prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) to position themselves to compete for capital.
As they compete for capital in the marketplace, more and more companies are eager to tell their value-creation story to investors and other stakeholders with information communicated outside of audited financial statements. This growing amount of information can be overwhelming to participants in and observers of capital markets.
Here we'll explore the current landscape of company-prepared information, ways to evaluate information’s usefulness, and the current role of auditors in building trust and confidence in information. The auditor’s role, while critical, is focused primarily on historical financial statements. That role is well positioned to expand. The auditing profession has the capabilities to bring its expertise—building trust and confidence in information—into new areas to enhance the reliability of information in the capital markets.
While not an exhaustive list, some of the common types of public-facing, company-prepared information—and auditors’ role in connection with that information—are summarized below.
"Investors and other consumers of the financial statements are increasingly relying on information not subject to the audit."
J. Brown, Board Member, Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) “Preventing Audit Extinction” October 2019
Learn more about some of the common types of public-facing, company-prepared information, and auditors’ role in connection with that information