So I hear that the scores were released for the third testing window this week. How did everyone do?? Hopefully a lot of passing scores :-) being that you studied your brain out and all. I can't wait to get my exam out of the way next month and receive that final (hopefully) letter in the mail. Sigh. Speaking of that looming test...even with my anxiety to get it out of the way, I've been less than motivated to crack down on the studying.
In addition to the obvious turmoil on Wall St this week...a lot of revenue for accounting firms has just changed hands too. Mainly there will be a huge loss of revenue to Deloitte & Touche and Ernst & Young...to the tune of about $1.027 billion from Merrill Lynch and $466 million from Lehman Brothers, respectively. (OK, so that's the "professional fees" paid by Merrill Lynch and Lehman Brothers, which include some other expenses in addition to external audit fees.) That revenue isn't exactly disappearing - it'll now end up in PricewaterhouseCoopers's pocket! PWC is the external auditor for both Bank of America and Barclay's. Granted it will be a lot less revenue after the buyouts, but still - there's a pretty good upside for PWC in all of this.
As for me at ML, it's business as usual right now - we're plowing ahead with our audit plan and as busy as ever. As I've probably mentioned before, I audit the private client wealth management business - which fortunately is ML's sweet spot. (We had great revenues when investment banking was sinking us.) Bank of America has about 4,000 Financial Advisors (FAs) in their wealth management business right now and ML has about 16,000 FAs. So, I get the feeling B of A is going to want to keep us around for those now 20,000 or so FAs. :-) Plus, Bob McCann (of Merrill) was appointed to run the combined private client business after the buyout - so I'm hoping he'll want to keep his brilliant auditors by his side.
Keep me updated on your scores! And feel free to share any stories on how you're affected by the major market turmoil this week, I know it's all that anyone's talked about these past two days. Any D&T Merrill or E&Y Lehman auditors out there? Should be an interesting next few quarters.