Would You Like To Be Confident That You're Data Is Correct?
Get Your Excel Spreadsheets Audited By IACT and Avoid Costly Consequences
Directors of companies, charities, departments of government and other organisations have numerous statutory, fiduciary, reporting and compliance obligations. Penalties for failing to meet them include fines, jail sentences, undesired share price movements and unplanned career changes.
The ability to meet these obligations is undermined if the information upon which decisions are based turns out to be flawed. In most businesses, a majority of that information is derived from spreadsheet models.
AstraZeneca spreadsheet slip-up forces reiteration of mid-term financial forecasts
Britain’s second largest drugmaker AstraZeneca (AZN.L) was forced to reiterate its 2011 and mid-term financial forecasts on Monday after inadvertently releasing confidential company information to analysts. The Anglo-Swedish firm, …. described the released details as “out of date planning information” which it said did not represent its forecast for the full year for 2011 or for future periods.
AstraZeneca …. said the mistaken information had slipped out during “a routine consensus collection process.”
“Confidential company information was inadvertently embedded in a spreadsheet template sent to the sell-side analyst community that follows the company,” its statement said.
Researchers embarrassed after student finds error in their published paper
In a paper, ‘Does High Public Debt Consistently Stifle Economic Growth? A Critique of Reinhart and Rogoff,’ Thomas Herndon, Michael Ash, and Robert Pollin of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst criticise a 2010 paper by Harvard economists Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff, ‘Growth in a Time of Debt.’ They find three main issues: First, Reinhart and Rogoff selectively exclude years of high debt and average growth. Second, they use a debatable method to weight the countries. Third, there also appears to be a coding error that excludes high-debt and average-growth countries. All three bias in favor of their result, and without them you don’t get their controversial result.”
Report identifies lack of spreadsheet controls, pressure to approve
See pages 131-132 of the JP Morgan Task Force Report “…further errors were discovered in the Basel II.5 model, including, most significantly, an operational error in the calculation of the relative changes in hazard rates and correlation estimates. Specifically, after subtracting the old rate from the new rate, the spreadsheet divided by their sum instead of their average, as the modeler had intended. This error likely had the effect of muting volatility by a factor of two and of lowering the VaR”
As reported in “A tempest in a spreadsheet” http://ftalphaville.ft.com/2013/01/17/1342082/a-tempest-in-a-spreadsheet/? Lisa Pollack comments “On a number of occasions, he asked the trader to whom he reported for additional resources to support his work on the VaR model, but he did not receive any. Also it appears that he (had to?) cut a number of corners, which resulted increased operational risk and artificially low volatility numbers … pressure was put on the reviewers to get on with approving the model”
We Can Help You And Your Company Avoid This
What is an Excel Audit?
We help you to quantify, manage and mitigate your spreadsheet with our Unique 7 Step Audit Program. SECURED.
S. Spreadsheet review
E. Evaluate and identify errors
C. Catalogue your spreadsheets
U. Understand error causation
R. Rebuild your Spreadsheets correctly
E. Educate your team on the correct usage
D. Deploy your secure Excel framework
After The Audit
Upon Completion of the Audit and the implementation of the SECURED program, your Company will be awarded the Excel Compliance Badge. This can be displayed on your website to give your customers confidence that your financial modelling and usage of Excel is correct.
Peace of Mind
You’ll be secure in the knowledge that you’re not making costly errors
Trail of Proof
You’ll own evidence that you pro-actively commissioned an Excel audit
Give your clients the security of knowing that your financials are in order