News

Is Your House in Order? Your Holiday Checklist

The holiday season is almost upon us, and it's an excellent time to get your financial house in order. One of the keys to stress-free living in the holiday season is to make a financial checklist, suggests Olivier Barbeau, Managing Partner at Moore Stephens Johannesburg. While all the festive detail is being sorted, serious financial elements can go adrift and target dates missed. A pre-holiday financial to-do list is a top priority, or should be, for many of us. Most of these tasks can be accomplished quickly, but the benefits can last a lifetime.

Don’t Be Caught by These Common Cyber Scams - Part 1 of 5

Cyber security has become a buzzword in the business environment due to the numerous breaches reported. In 2016 alone, there were reports about breaches in LinkedIn and MySpace. The Bangladesh Bank was robbed of $81 million via a SWIFT transfer, IRS, and the true extent of the Yahoo breach in 2014 is being reported. Hospitals and other healthcare organisations suffered ransomware attacks. In addition to attacks on companies, cyber criminals also target individuals with various different scams. In this series, we discuss more common scams you may come across, not only while browsing the internet or doing banking, but also in your everyday use of computers and other mobile devices. In this, Part 1, we cover Business Email Compromise, commonly known as Whaling.

Accounting Changes for Bearer Plants in The Agricultural Sector

Bearer plants related to agricultural activity are classified as property, plant and equipment under IAS 12 in the current financial period. (Effective date: For annual periods beginning on or after 1 January 2016). Previously, these would have been classified as biological assets along with the produce they bear, and valued at fair value per IAS 41. Produce continues to be classified as biological assets.

The Viability and Application of Polygraphs in The Conventional Investigative Processes

Polygraphing and its application can be a contentious issue. There are many reasons for this, but ultimately, as in all things, the level of input is equivalent to the resultant product.
 
The bulk of research done over the years, irrespective of personal opinion, is indicative of the fact that properly conducted polygraph examinations produce findings significantly better than chance. As such, this investigative tool has significant potential in the conventional investigative field.

Bringing Renewable Energy to Businesses in Rural Areas in Africa

Investors have identified opportunities to develop renewable energy in rural areas in several African countries, bringing power to small and medium-size businesses and the communities that surround them.
 
Together with technical partners, consulting and advisory firm, Moore Stephens Africa Advisory (MSAA) has a strategy to facilitate assisting rural communities and private developers to own and operate their own renewable energy farms.

SARS Special Stoppers

The issue of refunds remains of great concern to all involved. (See also the SAIT Member Alert 1 September 2016). We are sending this alert once again to inform you that you are not alone in your concerns. The issue of refunds is a widespread issue, based on the myriad of complaints that we receive daily, as well as on our discussions with other key recognised controlling bodies. The most urgent concerns relate to ITR12’s, with VAT refunds being an ongoing issue.

My Will and Estate Planning

We never like talking about death and taxes, but ensuring that you have a valid and current will can alleviate further hardship for the loved ones whom you leave behind. In this way, some unintended consequences are avoided, not to mention the unnecessary hardship for surviving family members during an already difficult time. 

Recent Developments in Terms of South African Transfer Pricing Documentation Requirements

South Africa’s transfer pricing legislation came into effect on 1 July 1995 and was followed by Practice Note 2 and Practice Note 7. These provided taxpayers with guidance on how the South African Revenue Service (“SARS”) intended to apply the legislation, including certain guidelines on transfer pricing documentation, which was largely based on the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (“OECD”) transfer pricing documentation guidelines. This remained the only point of reference for taxpayers and transfer pricing service providers until recently.  

Changes in The BEE Regulation Environment

Owing to recent changes in the BEE environment, our regulating body, the IRBA, has decided to withdraw from the regulation of B-BBEE assurance services with effect from 30 September 2016. All assurance engagements entered into prior to 30 September 2016, will be allowed a transitional period of three months until 31 December 2016 to complete these engagements.

Introducing the Draft King IV Report on Corporate Governance

The Institute of Directors in Southern Africa (IoDSA) and the King Committee have arguably been at the forefront of redesigning and institutionalising the corporate governance landscape in South Africa. King I was introduced in 1994, together with two further editions - one in 2002 (King II) and another in 2009 (King III)[1]. In 2014, taking into account local legislative and economic changes and international trends, IoDSA and the King Committee began the work of drafting a new report, King IV. This aimed at speaking to the aforementioned challenges, as well as concerns and issues faced by many private companies, non-profit companies and other juristic entities which had faced difficulties in implementing King III.
 
[1] As published on IoDSA’s website - http://www.iodsa.co.za/page/AboutKingIV

Amendments to The IFRS For SMEs Standard

After being with us for a little more than six years in its current form, the IASB has published amendments to the International Financial Reporting Standard for Small to Medium-sized Entities (IFRS for SMEs). Amendments become effective for annual periods beginning on or after 1 January 2017. Earlier application is permitted, in which case all amendments must be adopted.

Brexit: Two Weeks Later……

Two weeks after the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union (EU), the focus of attention is in three different areas: the political turmoil that has erupted in UK politics, the widespread speculation about the response of the remaining members of the EU and the reaction of global equity, bond and currency markets. 

Implications If MOI Is Not Completed and Submitted to CIPC

The Presidency proclaimed 01 May 2011 as the implementation date of the Companies Act, No. 71 of 2008, as amended by the Companies Amendment Act, No. 3 of 2011 (“New Companies Act”) and the Companies Regulations. This Act replaced the Companies Act, No. 61 of 1973 (“Old Companies Act”) on 01 May 2011, other than the provisions relating to liquidations and winding-up.

Security Best Practices for Cellphone Users - Part 1

There is no doubt that technology brings with it many advantages. However, there are also attendant risks which need to be carefully managed, to ensure that all its advantages can be enjoyed with the risks minimised as far as possible. Nowhere is this, perhaps, more important than in the case of mobile phones, where data can be accessed and compromised with relative ease.
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