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PwC faces inquiry over JP Morgan

Price Waterhouse Coopers, the world-renowned auditors, looks set to be referred to accountancy regulators after the FSA issued a £33.3 million fine against J.P. Morgan for mixing company money with client money. The FSA is set to refer PwC for the very fact that the company has been auditing the accounts of J.P. Morgan over the seven-year period during which the company admits mixing client money with company money.

When you consider that as much as £16 billion was held in incorrect bank accounts, giving no legal protection to client funds, this is the situation which has alarmed the FSA. It is unclear exactly how the situation arose as all financial institutions are well aware of the need to separate client money from company money, as are the many auditors and accountants also involved in the industry.

It is also unclear what action, if any, the regulator will take against Price Waterhouse Coopers but it does serve as a warning to those in the financial industry. The regulators are becoming ever more vigilant in their task of protecting client money and ensuring that the best advice is given to clients at all times. There is no doubt that the FSA has become more proactive on a number of fronts over the last few years and due to actions taken by the Authority, UK consumers now have more protection than ever before.

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