Significant inspection findings decrease, however consistent audit execution remains a challenge; CPAB and firms to focus on systems and processes to drive sustainable audit qualityTORONTO, Nov. 28, 2016 /CNW/ - In its public report on the 2016 inspections of Canada's four largest accounting firms (Big Four - Deloitte LLP, EY LLP, KPMG LLP, PwC LLP) released today, the Canadian Public Accountability Board (CPAB) said its findings indicate that, while the number of significant inspection findings fell in 2016 compared to the prior year, audit quality across the firms continues to be inconsistent. In 2016, CPAB inspected 87 (2015:93) engagement files; 11 of those had significant inspection findings (2015:24). A significant inspection finding is defined as a deficiency in the application of generally accepted auditing standards that could result in a restatement. For the four firms, results at one were consistently good (and comparable with prior years); results at one were stable year over year; and results improved for the two firms that experienced challenges in 2015. The vast majority of the inspection findings related to significant accounting estimates, executing audit fundamentals, professional judgment and skepticism, internal controls, and understanding business processes relevant to financial reporting. No restatements have been required to date. "We have seen a general improvement at the larger engagement file-specific level; however, inconsistency across firm practices and clients suggests that more effort is needed to fully embed the audit quality improvements seen in recent years in the firms' approach to every engagement," said Brian Hunt, CEO, CPAB. "Firms have sound audit methodologies and quality systems and, in most cases, engagement teams execute in compliance with them; however, we continue to find exceptions where firms do not execute consistently. There is still room for improvement."