Letter: Inside interest in the external audit

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Sir: Austin Mitchell's letter (16 September) on audits highlights a farcical situation.

In theory, auditors are appointed by the shareholder to represent their interests. In fact, auditors are appointed by the Board to represent their own, often quite different, interests. Thus, there is often a strong motivation to appoint, or reappoint, the most compliant and least effective auditors. It is as if in a law case, the choice of prosecuting barrister was left to the defendants, who looked for the least threatening prosecutors.


Benedict Beresford


17 September

17 September