Francine McKenna worked in consulting, professional services, accounting and financial management for more than 25 years. She writes "Accountable," a BankThink column on corporate governance, risk management and the Big Four audit firms and their impact on financial institutions. McKenna also blogs at re: The Auditors.
Standard Chartered did a lousy job of picking a monitor on behalf of regulators who'd flag its compliance lapses in the past. Now New York's Department of Financial Services must pick an independent monitor to oversee the British bank's activities for the next two years.
Big banks' boards keep missing increased risk and poor internal controls. Their auditors, supposedly shareholders' first line of defense against poor financial disclosure, material misstatements and fraud, have been silent.
PricewaterhouseCoopers failed to warn shareholders and the public about increased risk at Barclays. The auditor gave the British bank a clean report card on internal controls over financial reporting. We now know those controls were seriously deficient.