This was the outcome I expected, but I’m sure some audit firm partners, controllers and CFOs were hoping for something a little more earth-shattering.
The Supreme Court’s 5–4 decision Monday in the constitutional challenge to the PCAOB will leave the agency virtually unchanged. The court’s ruling will not affect day-to-day operations of the PCAOB, the agency said. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the majority opinion. In it, he said the court was isolating, or “severing,” from the rest of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act the one constitutional flaw the court found regarding the power to remove PCAOB members. “The consequence is that the [PCAOB] may continue to function as before, but its members may be removed at will by the [SEC],” said the Court’s summary of the decision.