Accountant's Opinion

Accountant's Opinion
A statement signed by an independent accountant outlining his or her opinion regarding the quality of information contained in a company's financial reports and records.

An accountant's opinion statement can either be qualified or unqualified. When the opinion is qualified, the accountant is questioning the accounting principles and/or scope of the information provided. An unqualified opinion is given when the accountant sees that the given information in the financial statements is sound. In other words, an unqualified opinion is desirable whereas a qualified opinion is not.

The subject of accountant independence became an important issue in the wake of the demise of such corporate giants as Enron and WorldCom in the early 2000's. Because Enron and WorldCom were large companies, they represented a substantial portion of their accounting firms' revenues. This lead to the speculation that the accountants could not provide truly independent opinions for these giant companies, who provided the accountants with extremely lucrative contracts but also might have terminated these contracts if undesirable accounting opinions were issued.

Investment dictionary. . 2012.

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  • Eugene Morse (accountant) — Eugene Morse is the internal auditor and whistleblower who uncovered and exposed massive accounting fraud at WorldCom in 2002 [cite web | title= OPINION ORDER in re: WORLDCOM, INC. SECURITIESLITIGATION 02 Civ. 3288 (DLC) Denise Cote, United… …   Wikipedia

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  • unqualified opinion — The version of an audit opinion rendered when a certified public accountant is satisfied that the financial statements are fairly presented and are consistent with those of the preceding year, and that the audit was performed in accordance with… …   Black's law dictionary

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