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Exam Code: CPA-REG Practice exam 2023 by team
CPA-REG CPA Regulation

Content area allocation Weight

I. Ethics, Professional Responsibilities and Federal Tax Procedures 10–20%

II. Business Law 10–20%

III. Federal Taxation of Property Transactions 12–22%

IV. Federal Taxation of Individuals 15–25%

V. Federal Taxation of Entities 28–38%

minutes — Welcome/enter launch code

5 minutes — Confidentiality/section information

4 hours — Testing time

15 minutes — Break after third testlet (option to pause exam timer)

5 minutes — Survey

Each of the four exam sections is broken down into five smaller sections called testlets. These testlets feature multiple-choice questions (MCQs) and task-based simulations (TBSs). In the case of BEC, you also have to complete three written communication tasks. The number of MCQs and TBSs tested varies depending upon the specific section taken. You will receive at least one research question (research-oriented TBS) in the AUD, FAR and REG sections. To complete them, you will have to search the related authoritative literature and find an appropriate reference.

The REG section blueprint is organized by content AREA, content GROUP
and content TOPIC. Each course includes one or more representative TASKS
that a newly licensed CPA may be expected to complete when performing tax
preparation services, tax advisory services or other responsibilities of a CPA.
The tasks in the blueprint are representative. They are not intended to be (nor
should they be viewed as) an all-inclusive list of tasks that may be tested in the
REG section of the Exam. Additionally, it should be noted that the number of
tasks associated with a particular content group or course is not indicative of the
extent such content group, course or related skill level will be assessed on the
Exam. Similarly, examples provided within the task statements should not be
viewed as all-inclusive.

Area I Ethics, Professional Responsibilities and

Federal Tax Procedures 10–20%

Area II Business Law 10–20%

Area III Federal Taxation of Property Transactions 12–22%

Area IV Federal Taxation of Individuals 15-25%

Area V Federal Taxation of Entities 28-38%

Overview of content areas

Area I of the REG section blueprint covers several topics, including the following:
• Ethics and Responsibilities in Tax Practice – Requirements based on Treasury
Department Circular 230 and the rules and regulations for tax return preparers

• Licensing and Disciplinary Systems – Requirements of state boards of
accountancy to obtain and maintain the CPA license

• Federal Tax Procedures – Understanding federal tax processes and
procedures, including appropriate disclosures, substantiation, penalties and
authoritative hierarchy

• Legal Duties and Responsibilities – Understanding legal issues that affect
the CPA and his or her practice

Area II of the REG section blueprint covers several syllabus of Business Law,
including the following:

• Knowledge and understanding of the legal implications of business
transactions, particularly as they relate to accounting, auditing and financial

• Areas of agency, contracts, debtor-creditor relationships, government
regulation of business, and business structure.

- The Uniform Commercial Code under the syllabus of contracts and
debtor-creditor relationships.

- Nontax-related business structure content. Area V of the REG section
blueprint covers the tax-related issues of the various business structures.
• Federal and widely adopted uniform state laws and references as identified
in References below.

Area III, Area IV and Area V of the REG section blueprint cover various topics
of federal income taxation and gift and estate tax. Accounting methods and
periods, and tax elections are included in the Areas listed below:

• Area III covers the federal income taxation of property transactions. Area III
also covers syllabus related to federal estate and gift taxation.

• Area IV covers the federal income taxation of individuals from both a tax
preparation and tax planning perspective.

• Area V covers the federal income taxation of entities including sole
proprietorships, partnerships, limited liability companies, C corporations,

S corporations, joint ventures, trusts, estates and tax-exempt organizations,
from both a tax preparation and tax planning perspective.

Section assumptions

The REG section of the exam includes multiple-choice questions,
task-based simulations and research prompts. Candidates should assume
that the information provided in each question is material and should apply
all stated assumptions. To the extent a question addresses a course that could
have different tax treatments based on timing (e.g., alimony arrangements
or net operating losses), it will include a clear indication of the timing (e.g.,
use of real dates) so that the candidates can determine the appropriate
portions of the Internal Revenue Code or Treasury Regulations to apply to

Remembering and understanding is mainly concentrated in Area I and Area II.
These two areas contain the general ethics, professional responsibilities and
business law knowledge that is required for newly licensed CPAs and is tested
at the lower end of the skill level continuum.

• Application and analysis skills are primarily tested in Areas III, IV and V. These
three areas contain more of the day-to-day tasks that newly licensed CPAs are
expected to perform and therefore are tested at the higher end of the skill level

The representative tasks combine both the applicable content knowledge and
the skills required in the context of the work that a newly licensed CPA would
reasonably be expected to perform. The REG section does not test any content at
the Evaluation skill level as newly licensed CPAs are not expected to demonstrate
that level of skill in regards to the REG content.

1. Regulations



before the Internal Revenue Service

Recall the regulations governing practice before the Internal Revenue Service.

Apply the regulations governing practice before the Internal Revenue Service given a specific scenario.

2. Internal Revenue

Code and



to tax return


Recall who is a tax return preparer.

Recall situations that would result in federal tax return preparer penalties.

Apply potential federal tax return preparer penalties given a specific scenario.

B. Licensing and disciplinary systems

Understand and explain the role and authority of state boards of accountancy.

C. Federal tax procedures

1. Audits, appeals

and judicial


Explain the audit and appeals process as it relates to federal tax matters.

Explain the different levels of the judicial process as they relate to federal tax matters.

Identify options available to a taxpayer within the audit and appeals process given a specific


Identify options available to a taxpayer within the judicial process given a specific scenario.

2. Substantiation

and disclosure

of tax positions

Summarize the requirements for the appropriate disclosure of a federal tax return


Identify situations in which disclosure of federal tax return positions is required.

Identify whether substantiation is sufficient given a specific scenario.

3. Taxpayer penalties Recall situations that would result in taxpayer penalties relating to federal tax returns.

Calculate taxpayer penalties relating to federal tax returns.

4. Authoritative


Recall the appropriate hierarchy of authority for federal tax purposes.

D. Legal duties and responsibilities

1. Common law

duties and

liabilities to

clients and third


Summarize the tax return preparers common law duties and liabilities to clients and

third parties.

Identify situations which result in violations of the tax return preparers common law duties

and liabilities to clients and third parties.

2. Privileged



and privacy acts

Summarize the rules regarding privileged communications as they relate to tax practice.

Identify situations in which communications regarding tax practice are considered


1. Authority of agents

and principals Recall the types of agent authority.

Identify whether an agency relationship exists given a specific scenario.

2. Duties and

liabilities of agents

and principals

Explain the various duties and liabilities of agents and principals.

Identify the duty or liability of an agent or principal given a specific scenario.

B. Contracts

1. Formation Summarize the elements of contract formation between parties.

Identify whether a valid contract was formed given a specific scenario.

Identify different types of contracts (e.g., written, verbal, unilateral, express and implied)

given a specific scenario.

2. Performance Explain the rules related to the fulfillment of performance obligations necessary for an

executed contract.

Identify whether both parties to a contract have fulfilled their performance obligation given

a specific scenario.

3. Discharge, breach

and remedies

Explain the different ways in which a contract can be discharged (e.g., performance,

agreement and operation of the law).

Summarize the different remedies available to a party for breach of contract.

Identify situations involving breach of contract.

Identify whether a contract has been discharged given a specific scenario.

Identify the remedy available to a party for breach of contract given a specific scenario.

C. Debtor-creditor relationships

1. Rights, duties

and liabilities of



and guarantors

Explain the rights, duties and liabilities of debtors, creditors and guarantors.

Identify rights, duties or liabilities of debtors, creditors or guarantors given a specific


2. Bankruptcy and


Explain the rights of the debtors and the creditors in bankruptcy and insolvency.

Summarize the rules related to the different types of bankruptcy.

Explain discharge of indebtedness in bankruptcy.

Identify the rights of the debtors and the creditors in bankruptcy and insolvency given a

specific scenario.

Identify the type of bankruptcy described in a specific scenario.

3. Secured


Explain how property can serve as collateral in secured transactions.

Summarize the priority rules of secured transactions.

Explain the requirements needed to create and perfect a security interest.

Identify the prioritized ordering of perfected security interests given a specific scenario.

Identify whether a creditor has created and perfected a security interest given a

specific scenario.

D. Government regulation of business

1. Federal securities


Summarize the various securities laws and regulations that affect corporate governance

with respect to the federal Securities Act of 1933 and federal Securities Exchange Act

of 1934.

Identify violations of the various securities laws and regulations that affect corporate

governance with respect to the federal Securities Act of 1933 and federal Securities

Exchange Act of 1934.

2. Other federal

laws and


(e.g., employment

tax, qualified health

plans and worker


Summarize federal laws and regulations, for example, employment tax, qualified health plans

and worker classification federal laws and regulations.

Identify violations of federal laws and regulations, for example, employment tax, qualified

health plans and worker classification federal laws and regulations.

1. Selection and

formation of

business entity

and related


and termination

Summarize the processes for formation and termination of various business entities.

Summarize the non-tax operational features for various business entities.

Identify the type of business entity that is best described by a given set of

nontax-related characteristics.

2. Rights, duties,

legal obligations

and authority

of owners and


Summarize the rights, duties, legal obligations and authority of owners and management.

Identify the rights, duties, legal obligations or authorities of owners or management given a

specific scenario.

1. Basis and holding

period of assets

Calculate the tax basis of an asset.

Determine the holding period of a disposed asset for classification of tax gain or loss.

2. Taxable and



Calculate the realized and recognized gain or loss on the disposition of assets for federal income

tax purposes.

Calculate the realized gain, recognized gain and deferred gain on like-kind property exchange

transactions for federal income tax purposes.

Analyze asset sale and exchange transactions to determine whether they are taxable or


3. Amount and

character of gains

and losses, and

netting process


installment sales)

Calculate the amount of capital gains and losses for federal income tax purposes.

Calculate the amount of ordinary income and loss for federal income tax purposes.

Calculate the amount of gain on an installment sale for federal income tax purposes.

Review asset transactions to determine the character (capital vs. ordinary) of the gain or

loss for federal income tax purposes.

Analyze an agreement of sale of an asset to determine whether it qualifies for installment

sale treatment for federal income tax purposes.

4. Related party


(including imputed


Recall related parties for federal income tax purposes.

Recall the impact of related party ownership percentages on acquisition and disposition

transactions of property for federal income tax purposes.

Calculate the direct and indirect ownership percentages of corporation stock or partnership

interests to determine whether there are related parties for federal income tax purposes.

Calculate a taxpayers basis in an asset that was disposed of at a loss to the taxpayer by a

related party.

Calculate a taxpayers gain or loss on a subsequent disposition of an asset to an unrelated

third party that was previously disposed of at a loss to the taxpayer by a related party.

Calculate the impact of imputed interest on related party transactions for federal

tax purposes.

B. Cost recovery (depreciation, depletion and amortization)

Calculate tax depreciation for tangible business property and tax amortization of intangible


Calculate depletion for federal income tax purposes.

Compare the tax benefits of the different expensing options for tax depreciation for federal

income tax purposes.

Reconcile the activity in the beginning and ending accumulated tax depreciation account.

1. Transfers subject

to gift tax Recall transfers of property subject to federal gift tax.

Recall whether federal Form 709 — United States Gift (and Generation-Skipping Transfer)

Tax Return is required to be filed.

Calculate the amount and classification of a gift for federal gift tax purposes.

Calculate the amount of a gift subject to federal gift tax.

2. Gift tax annual

exclusion and gift

tax deductions

Recall allowable gift tax deductions and exclusions for federal gift tax purposes.

Recall situations involving the gift tax annual exclusion, gift-splitting and the impact on

the use of the lifetime exclusion amount for federal gift tax purposes.

Compute the amount of taxable gifts for federal gift tax purposes.

3. Determination

of taxable estate

Recall assets includible in a decedents gross estate for federal estate tax purposes.

Recall allowable estate tax deductions for federal estate tax purposes.

Calculate the taxable estate for federal estate tax purposes.

Calculate the gross estate for federal estate tax purposes.

Calculate the allowable estate tax deductions for federal estate tax purposes

Calculate the amounts that should be included in, or excluded from, an individuals gross

income as reported on federal Form 1040 — U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.

Analyze projected income for use in tax planning in future years.

Analyze client-provided documentation to determine the appropriate amount of gross

income to be reported on federal Form 1040 — U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.

B. Reporting of items from pass-through entities

Prepare federal Form 1040 — U.S. Individual Income Tax Return based on the information

provided on Schedule K-1.

C. Adjustments and deductions to arrive at adjusted gross income and taxable income

Calculate the amount of adjustments and deductions to arrive at adjusted gross income

and taxable income on federal Form 1040 — U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.

Calculate the qualifying business income (QBI) deduction for federal income tax purposes.

Analyze client-provided documentation to determine the validity of the deductions

taken to arrive at adjusted gross income or taxable income on federal Form 1040 — U.S.

Individual Income Tax Return.

D. Passive activity losses (excluding foreign tax credit implications)

Recall passive activities for federal income tax purposes.

Calculate net passive activity gains and losses for federal income tax purposes.

Prepare a loss carryforward schedule for passive activities for federal income tax purposes.

Calculate utilization of suspended losses on the disposition of a passive activity for

federal income tax purposes.

Uniform CPA Examination Blueprints: Regulation (REG) REG16

Regulation (REG)

Area IV – Federal Taxation of Individuals

CPA Regulation
AICPA Regulation thinking
Killexams : AICPA Regulation thinking - BingNews Search results Killexams : AICPA Regulation thinking - BingNews Killexams : AICPA Advocacy

Tulane’s School of Professional Advancement will provide a library of online courses for the first class of accounting graduates completing their 150-credit-hour requirement while earning a paycheck via the AICPA and NASBA’s Experience, Learn & Earn program.

The AICPA said the National Pipeline Advisory Group will “play a critical role in guiding” the conversation and making calls to action to address the slowdown in young people choosing accounting as a career.

Too many businesses are unaware of the beneficial ownership information reporting requirements, which will be a burden for small businesses, the AICPA told Congress.

The AICPA Auditing Standards Board’s Technology Working Group has developed a new practice aid that will emphasize how technology should be seen as a key enabler, elevating audit effectiveness and efficiency for the future. It uses risk assessment procedures under SAS No. 145 as the example.

The national taxpayer advocate recommended changes that range from one simple one the IRS can handle on its own to congressional action.

Leaders with their finger on the pulse of sustainability reporting see an opportunity for accountants to create value. They also see that challenges such as interoperability and capacity building will need to be addressed.

The Experience, Learn & Earn program aims to turn accounting students into employees faster and in a more economical way, to the benefit of companies seeking talent.

From its launch in the early days of the pandemic through Tuesday’s milestone episode, Town Hall has kept more than 800,000 viewers informed about the most important issues affecting the profession.

The IRS issues at least its seventh warning about the employee retention credit since October 2022.

At its spring meeting, the AICPA Council voiced support for the Pipeline Acceleration Plan and decided to move forward with development of a national strategy focused on boosting the accounting profession’s talent outlook.

Sat, 02 Oct 2021 10:59:00 -0500 text/html
Killexams : How Too Much Regulation Hurts America's Poor

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing. A lot has changed since that incredible event, including the size and scope of the federal government. From 1970 to 2017, the number of words in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) nearly tripled from 35 million to over 103 million. This increase in regulation reduced economic growth and lowered Americans’ incomes, and now

Of course, not all regulation is bad. Regulations that focus on basic worker or consumer safety often have benefits that outweigh their costs. But many regulations on the books today go way beyond basic safety, which isn’t surprising considering the rapid growth of the CFR just mentioned. Such regulations protect established businesses by limiting entry or increase firms’ costs without providing an offsetting safety benefit, harming workers, customers, and potential entrepreneurs in the process.

And this harm is not just theoretical. The studies in a recent issue of the academic journal Public Choice focus on how regulation impacts lower-income people and many of them find harmful effects.

One study by Dustin Chambers, Courtney A. Collins, and Alan Krause finds that regulation leads to higher consumer prices—a 10% increase in total regulation leads to about a 1% increase in prices. They also find that low-income households spend more of their money on the goods and services most prone to regulation-induced price increases. This means too much regulation worsens the financial problems of people who are already struggling.

Another study by G.P. Manish and Colin O’Reilly finds that more intense banking supervision and regulation is associated with greater income inequality. They attribute this finding to regulatory capture, in which banking-industry insiders capture the regulatory process and use it to promote the interests of established banks at the expense of competitors. The result is fewer banking options for low-income households which makes it harder for them to accumulate wealth.

A third study by Dustin Chambers, Patrick McLaughlin, and Laura Stanley finds that more federal regulation is associated with more poverty at the state level. Using a measure of the federal regulatory burden imposed on each state, they find that at 10% increase in a state’s regulatory burden is associated with a 2.5% increase in the state’s poverty rate.

In addition to these studies, others show that too much regulation reduces employment growth and business investment, both of which contribute to lower wages for workers.

Luckily, people are starting to pay closer attention to the costs of too much regulation. Kentucky has set up a red-tape-reduction initiative that has already repealed or amended 27% of the state’s administrative regulations. Rhode Island is engaged in an ambitious program to reduce its regulatory burden and the state’s Code of Regulations recently won an innovation award. Virginia also has a bipartisan plan in place to reduce unnecessary regulation and Idaho is in the process of analyzing its entire regulatory code after lawmakers failed to reauthorize it.

Not to be outdone, the Trump administration has tried to take similar steps at the federal level. So far it has been unable to repeal as many regulations as Trump initially hoped, but it has significantly slowed the growth of new regulations, as shown in the figure below from the Regulatory Studies Center at George Washington University.

Regulatory Studies Center at GWU

The administration has also pressured states to reform their occupational licensing and reduce land-use regulations that drive up the cost of housing. The effectiveness of these actions remains to be seen but since both types of regulation disproportionately hurt low-income people it’s encouraging to see that the administration is skeptical of them.

Regulation has costs and benefits, but for too long the costs were largely ignored. As a result, there’s too much regulation at all levels of government and exact research highlights how all this regulation is particularly harmful to the country’s poor. Regulatory reform efforts in Kentucky, Rhode Island, Virginia, and other states—along with the federal reforms—are a good step towards simplifying the maze of regulation entrepreneurs must navigate and more states should follow their lead.

Tue, 23 Jul 2019 00:49:00 -0500 Adam A. Millsap en text/html
Killexams : Proposed regulations update, revise consolidated return regulations

Proposed regulations issued Friday (REG-134420-12) would update and revise the consolidated return regulations to reflect legislative action taken during the past 50-plus years, remove consolidated return regulations that have no practical applicability to taxpayers, eliminate obsolete or otherwise incorrect terms and cross-references, remove transition rules for transactions occurring in or before 2009, and eliminate antiquated or regressive terminology.

The proposed regulations would also withdraw or partially withdraw numerous proposed regulations that are being incorporated in the new proposed regulations or have been incorporated in revised form in final regulations or that have been obsoleted by other final regulations. Also being eliminated are various proposed regulations that cross-referenced temporary regulations that were removed, have expired, or otherwise have become obsolete. Additionally, the proposed regulations would withdraw temporary regulations that no longer have practical applicability to taxpayers or that would be replaced when the proposed regulations are finalized.

Among the changes the proposed regulations would make to reflect statutory amendments, the proposed regulations would modify the definition of the word "tax" in Sec. 1.1502(b)(5) to add a reference in Sec. 55(a), to reflect the amendment of Sec. 55 to impose the new corporate alternative minimum tax by the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, P.L. 117-169. They also would add a reference to the Sec. 59A base erosion and anti-abuse tax (BEAT) that was added in the law known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, P.L. 115-97.

Regarding replacing antiquated language, the proposed regulations would replace all gender-specific pronouns and other identifiers in the consolidated returns regulations with gender-neural pronouns and identifiers. They would also identify American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands as "territories" rather than "possessions" of the United States.

Updating the consolidated return regulations to reflect statutory changes and removing obsolete rules from them was included in the most exact priority guidance plan published by IRS and also in previous versions.

Written or electronic comments and requests for a public hearing must be received by Nov. 6.

— To comment on this article or to suggest an idea for another article, contact Martha Waggoner at

Sat, 12 Aug 2023 05:59:00 -0500 text/html
Killexams : Antitrust Regulation by Intimidation

Mon, 24 Jul 2023 10:08:00 -0500 en-US text/html
Killexams : AARC-360 Successfully Completes AICPA Peer Review with Outstanding Pass Rating No result found, try new keyword!The AICPA Peer Review Program is a rigorous assessment that evaluates the quality control systems of accounting and auditing firms. It serves as an independent validation of a firm's adherence to ... Tue, 22 Aug 2023 02:09:00 -0500 en-US text/html Killexams : How To Get AI Regulation Right

Eleanor Lightbody is CEO of Luminance, a leading provider of AI technology for document review and legal process automation.

As artificial intelligence (AI) hits the mainstream consciousness like never before, it’s no surprise that the conversation has swiftly moved on to how we regulate it. But with AI regulation yet to be imposed by any major global regulator, industry leaders are uniquely positioned to be forward-thinking and bold in their approach.

From self-driving vehicles on our roads to medical imaging in hospitals and fraud-detection software used by banks, AI is having a profound impact on our economy and society. Indeed, a exact report by Goldman Sachs indicated that AI is expected to raise global GDP by as much as 7% over a ten-year period.

But if we are to achieve that ambition, we must not allow the economic and societal importance of AI to get lost amid the fears and scaremongering that currently surrounds the technology. Rather, we should be encouraging the creation of regulatory frameworks that promote the development and productization of AI.

Where To Begin

So, where do we begin? Effective AI regulation should start with bringing the great minds behind AI to the table—those who possess a sophisticated understanding of AI and its applications. There is currently a fixation on creating regulation that forces decisions made by AI to be "explainable." I believe this approach is unrealistic because AI doesn’t formulate decisions in an "explainable" way.

We as humans like to think of our own decisions as explainable, but it’s actually a lot more complex than that. If I ask you, "Why did you have toast for breakfast," in all likelihood, you didn’t think about why you made that decision, but you will post-justify it. You may give an explanation that often bears no similarity to why you made the decision. Much like the human brain, AI considers the subtleties and complexities of vast sums of data in order to reach a decision.

A rush to impose overly simple regulation is not only going to stop the development of AI but also the benefits it brings. We need a balance. For example, we need to be careful about how people’s private medical records are used—and that’s a good thing. But if we regulate it in a way that prevents us from using AI to spot cancer three months earlier, that would be a tragedy.

The draft EU AI Act is a good first step for regulation. It focuses on curbing certain AI applications, like live facial recognition, "social scoring," and predictive policing, that present unacceptable levels of risk to the public. This approach aims to protect rights and values, recognizing the need for AI creators to be involved in discussions.

The EU's approach, which treats AI as a social issue rather than a purely technological one, seems sensible given we are still trying to understand how wide-ranging the effects of AI will be.

Challenges In AI Regulation

To be sure, legislating technology, let alone such a rapidly developing technology as AI is no easy task. The Countering Online Harms Act has only recently come into force, even though the internet has been an integral part of society for years. Further, there are several big questions that governments will have to tackle when it comes to creating AI regulation.

Take, for example, the simple assertion, "AI shouldn’t undermine democracy." To effectively legislate this, lawmakers will have to answer questions about what, exactly, this means.

What do we define as democracy? What data is the AI being trained on and who is training it? Do they fall to the left or right of the political spectrum? And who sits above these biases and can objectively say what’s right? These questions are all part of the regulatory process and something that industry leaders will have to answer.

Despite the complexity of the challenge, we are at a pivotal moment in the AI revolution. We cannot afford to shut down AI altogether when our quality of life and collective prosperity depend on these systems. Technology that can help discover drugs that could limit the effects of cancer and Alzheimer’s or prevent disaster by visualizing potential areas of flooding is surely no bad thing.

And yet, at the same time, we must protect society against AI being misused. There is a clear need for more robust and ultimately more consistent regulatory guidance informed by AI experts.

The Way Forward

So, how can we get AI regulation right? It’s clearly not a question easily answered. However, there are steps we can take. We should not allow the AI debate or, indeed, essential AI knowledge to be monopolized by a single body.

Constructive dialogue between both regulators and AI businesses is essential if we want to strike a balance between consumer protection and AI commercialization. Further, we cannot allow overcaution to prevail over innovation.

We should be confident in adopting a flexible framework that acknowledges the wide-ranging applications of AI, moving away from a simplistic "one-size-fits-all" mindset to more of a case-by-case, or even industry-by-industry, approach. This will be key to allowing the global AI ecosystem to thrive and drive us into the next technological revolution.

Forbes Technology Council is an invitation-only community for world-class CIOs, CTOs and technology executives. Do I qualify?

Wed, 09 Aug 2023 01:01:00 -0500 Eleanor Lightbody (neé Weaver) en text/html
Killexams : AICPA & CIMA offer climate accounting education resources

The Association of International Certified Professional Accountants unveiled a new educational report on climate resilience Monday, the fourth in a series of online documents aimed at educating accountants about sustainability.

Accounting for Climate Resilience  aims to help finance professionals lead their organizations with initiatives like scenario analysis and adaptation planning so they can build greater resilience. It comes amid alarming signs of climate change, as record-setting temperatures have hit the U.S., Europe and other parts of the world in exact days. 

The Association of International Certified Professional Accountants is the umbrella organization for the American Institute of CPAs and the London-based Chartered Institute of Professional Accountants, together known as AICPA & CIMA.

"Finance professionals are at the heart of business and therefore are well-placed to help create resilient business models and implement strategies for organizational sustainability in a changing world," said Martin Farrar, associate technical director at AICPA & CIMA, in a statement. "They have connections within the business and can join the dots with stakeholders outside the business to start conversations about what resilience looks like in relation to the risks posed by the climate emergency."

This and the other educational briefs try to help organizations and their accountants consider sustainability issues, integrate them into long-term decision-making, and incorporate them within internal and external reporting.

The previous reports included Accounting for the Sustainable Development Goals, Accounting for Carbon and Accounting for Nature

Accountants have increasingly become involved in providing assurance services for sustainability reporting, in line with the trend toward greater environmental, social and governance reporting, as more companies provide shareholders with ESG reports. 

The AICPA & CIMA have been encouraging accountants to provide such services. "With their skills and knowledge, finance professionals can provide insights into organizational governance, strategy, risk management, and performance to support sustainable decision-making built on sound business analysis and assurance of both financial and non-financial information, including sustainability-related data," said Jeremy Osborn, global head of ESG at AICPA & CIMA," in a statement. "They are ideally placed to support climate scenario development and build this into organizational adaptation plans."

Last month, the Center for Audit Quality updated its analysis of the number of S&P 500 companies providing ESG assurance, and found the number of S&P 500 companies reporting ESG information grew from 93% to 99%. The number of companies seeking assurance over certain ESG metrics increased by 13% from 2020, from 52% to 65%. Of the companies that assured their ESG information, 18% engaged a public company auditor. The majority of companies that used a public company auditor to assure their ESG information used the same firm that performed their financial statement audit. In 2021, the scope of information being subject to assurance increased, especially when public company audit firms provided the assurance

There has been a backlash against ESG investment funds in some conservative-led states like Florida and Texas, and Republicans in Congress have been holding hearings in exact months in an effort to discourage ESG investment funds and sustainability reporting. Nevertheless, such reporting is likely to remain in demand, especially with the Securities and Exchange Commission expected to finalize the rule it proposed last year for climate-related disclosures sometime this fall. Many other countries have already begun moving forward with the European Union imposing a Corporate Reporting Sustainability Directive, and the International Sustainability Standards Board finalizing its sustainability and climate disclosure standards late last month.

Mon, 24 Jul 2023 04:31:00 -0500 en text/html
Killexams : Gene Expression and Regulation

How does a gene, which consists of a string of DNA hidden in a cell's nucleus, know when it should express itself? How does this gene cause the production of a string of amino acids called a protein? How do different types of cells know which types of proteins they must manufacture? The answers to such questions lie in the study of gene expression. Thus, this collection or articles begins by showing how a quiet, well-guarded string of DNA is expressed to make RNA, and how the messenger RNA is translated from nucleic acid coding to protein coding to form a protein. Along the way, the article set also examines the nature of the genetic code, how the elements of code were predicted, and how the real codons were determined.

Next, we turn to the regulation of genes. Genes can't control an organism on their own; rather, they must interact with and respond to the organism's environment. Some genes are constitutive, or always "on," regardless of environmental conditions. Such genes are among the most important elements of a cell's genome, and they control the ability of DNA to replicate, express itself, and repair itself. These genes also control protein synthesis and much of an organism's central metabolism. In contrast, regulated genes are needed only occasionally — but how do these genes get turned "on" and "off"? What specific molecules control when they are expressed?

It turns out that the regulation of such genes differs between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. For prokaryotes, most regulatory proteins are negative and therefore turn genes off. Here, the cells rely on protein–small molecule binding, in which a ligand or small molecule signals the state of the cell and whether gene expression is needed. The repressor or activator protein binds near its regulatory target: the gene. Some regulatory proteins must have a ligand attached to them to be able to bind, whereas others are unable to bind when attached to a ligand. In prokaryotes, most regulatory proteins are specific to one gene, although there are a few proteins that act more widely. For instance, some repressors bind near the start of mRNA production for an entire operon, or cluster of coregulated genes. Furthermore, some repressors have a fine-tuning system known as attenuation, which uses mRNA structure to stop both transcription and translation depending on the concentration of an operon's end-product enzymes. (In eukaryotes, there is no exact equivalent of attenuation, because transcription occurs in the nucleus and translation occurs in the cytoplasm, making this sort of coordinated effect impossible.) Yet another layer of prokaryotic regulation affects the structure of RNA polymerase, which turns on large groups of genes. Here, the sigma factor of RNA polymerase changes several times to produce heat- and desiccation-resistant spores. Here, the articles on prokaryotic regulation delve into each of these topics, leading to primary literature in many cases.

For eukaryotes, cell-cell differences are determined by expression of different sets of genes. For instance, an undifferentiated fertilized egg looks and acts quite different from a skin cell, a neuron, or a muscle cell because of differences in the genes each cell expresses. A cancer cell acts different from a normal cell for the same reason: It expresses different genes. (Using microarray analysis, scientists can use such differences to assist in diagnosis and selection of appropriate cancer treatment.) Interestingly, in eukaryotes, the default state of gene expression is "off" rather than "on," as in prokaryotes. Why is this the case? The secret lies in chromatin, or the complex of DNA and histone proteins found within the cellular nucleus. The histones are among the most evolutionarily conserved proteins known; they are vital for the well-being of eukaryotes and brook little change. When a specific gene is tightly bound with histone, that gene is "off." But how, then, do eukaryotic genes manage to escape this silencing? This is where the histone code comes into play. This code includes modifications of the histones' positively charged amino acids to create some domains in which DNA is more open and others in which it is very tightly bound up. DNA methylation is one mechanism that appears to be coordinated with histone modifications, particularly those that lead to silencing of gene expression. Small noncoding RNAs such as RNAi can also be involved in the regulatory processes that form "silent" chromatin. On the other hand, when the tails of histone molecules are acetylated at specific locations, these molecules have less interaction with DNA, thereby leaving it more open. The regulation of the opening of such domains is a hot course in research. For instance, researchers now know that complexes of proteins called chromatin remodeling complexes use ATP to repackage DNA in more open configurations. Scientists have also determined that it is possible for cells to maintain the same histone code and DNA methylation patterns through many cell divisions. This persistence without reliance on base pairing is called epigenetics, and there is abundant evidence that epigenetic changes cause many human diseases.

For transcription to occur, the area around a prospective transcription zone needs to be unwound. This is a complex process requiring the coordination of histone modifications, transcription factor binding and other chromatin remodeling activities. Once the DNA is open, specific DNA sequences are then accessible for specific proteins to bind. Many of these proteins are activators, while others are repressors; in eukaryotes, all such proteins are often called transcription factors (TFs). Each TF has a specific DNA binding domain that recognizes a 6-10 base-pair motif in the DNA, as well as an effector domain. In the test tube, scientists can find a footprint of a TF if that protein binds to its matching motif in a piece of DNA. They can also see whether TF binding slows the migration of DNA in gel electrophoresis.

For an activating TF, the effector domain recruits RNA polymerase II, the eukaryotic mRNA-producing polymerase, to begin transcription of the corresponding gene. Some activating TFs even turn on multiple genes at once. All TFs bind at the promoters just upstream of eukaryotic genes, similar to bacterial regulatory proteins. However, they also bind at regions called enhancers, which can be oriented forward or backwards and located upstream or downstream or even in the introns of a gene, and still activate gene expression. Because many genes are coregulated, studying gene expression across the whole genome via microarrays or massively parallel sequencing allows investigators to see which groups of genes are coregulated during differentiation, cancer, and other states and processes.

Most eukaryotes also make use of small noncoding RNAs to regulate gene expression. For example, the enzyme Dicer finds double-stranded regions of RNA and cuts out short pieces that can serve in a regulatory role. Argonaute is another enzyme that is important in regulation of small noncoding RNA–dependent systems. Here we offfer an introductory article on these RNAs, but more content is needed; please contact the editors if you are interested in contributing.

Imprinting is yet another process involved in eukaryotic gene regulation; this process involves the silencing of one of the two alleles of a gene for a cell's entire life span. Imprinting affects a minority of genes, but several important growth regulators are included. For some genes, the maternal copy is always silenced, while for different genes, the paternal copy is always silenced. The epigenetic marks placed on these genes during egg or sperm formation are faithfully copied into each subsequent cell, thereby affecting these genes throughout the life of the organism.

Still another mechanism that causes some genes to be silenced for an organism's entire lifetime is X inactivation. In female mammals, for instance, one of the two copies of the X chromosome is shut off and compacted greatly. This shutoff process requires transcription, the participation of two noncoding RNAs (one of which coats the inactive X chromosome), and the participation of a DNA-binding protein called CTCF. As the possible role of regulatory noncoding RNAs in this process is investigated, more information regarding X inactivation will no doubt be discovered.

Image: 'Illumination' by Patrick Morgan, from the cover of Nature Reviews Genetics, June 2006. All rights reserved.

Hoopes, L. (2008) Introduction to the gene expression and regulation course room. Nature Education 1(1):160

Wed, 03 Oct 2018 15:41:00 -0500 en text/html
Killexams : Genetic Regulation of Cancer Mutations in two general types of genes lead to cancer: tumor suppressor genes, which normally act like "brakes" to inhibit cell growth and division, and proto-oncogenes, which normally act like "gas pedals" to accelerate cell growth and division. Mutations that inhibit the activity of tumor suppressor genes or that overactivate proto-oncogenes can drive cells to cancer; in either case, cells lose their brakes, hit the gas pedal, and accelerate uncontrollably toward a cancerous state.

Tumor suppressor genes were first discovered by Alfred Knudson through his studies of the inheritance of retinoblastoma, a childhood form of retinal cancer (Knudson, 1971). Mutations that inactivate tumor suppressor genes (called loss-of-function mutations) can be caused by deletion of the tumor suppressor gene, by a point mutation that leads to a functionally inactive tumor suppressor gene-encoded protein, or by a mutation that disrupts the promoter region of the tumor suppressor gene, leading to a loss or reduction in its expression. In most cases, tumor suppressor gene loss-of-function mutations are recessive, meaning that both copies of a cell's tumor suppressor gene must be mutated in order for cancer to occur.

A bladder cancer-associated mutation in the human HRAS gene, which converts the twelfth glycine residue to a valine in the HRAS-encoded protein, was the first somatic mutation in a proto-oncogene shown to cause cancer (Reddy et al., 1982). Mutations in proto-oncogenes that convert them to oncogenes (called gain-of-function mutations) can be caused by single base-pair changes that lead to a hyperactive form of the proto-oncogene, by a gene amplification event that results in many extra copies of the proto-oncogene within the genome and higher expression levels of that gene, or by a mutation in the promoter region of the proto-oncogene that leads to an increase in its expression. Within the cell, these mutations behave in a dominant fashion, meaning that one changed allele can lead to uncontrolled cell proliferation.

A exact high-throughput study shows that some types of cancer are associated with mutations in a specific proto-oncogene or in a specific pair of proto-oncogenes (Thomas et al., 2007). In this study, researchers screened 1,000 different tumor samples representing 17 different forms of cancer; the samples included individual tumor samples, primary tumor specimens, cancer cell lines, short-term cultures of tumor samples, and xenografts derived from tumor cell lines. The researchers screened 238 known oncogenic mutations in 17 different proto-oncogenes. Out of the 17 genes, 14 were mutated in at least one sample, and 34% of the 238 oncogenic mutations were detected. Thirty percent of the tumor samples contained at least one oncogenic mutation.

Figure 3 shows the association between certain forms of cancer and specific oncogenic mutations. Figure 4a shows the correlation between the various oncogenic mutations among the genes examined and the different types of tumors screened. Black bars indicate the occurrence of oncogenic mutations, and red bars indicate oncogenic mutations that occurred in pairs. Researchers found that 30% of all mutations in PIK3CA occurred in combination with a second oncogenic mutation (usually in KRAS), and that oncogenic mutations in the BRAF gene often occurred in combination with a mutation in the HRAS gene (see Figures 4b and 4c, respectively). As the researchers screened for known mutations in the 17 different proto-oncogenes, they also identified several previously unknown oncogenic mutations. The results of this study show that mutations in this set of 17 proto-oncogenes have a high propensity to lead to cancer, and that several paths can lead to cancer.

Fri, 19 Aug 2022 11:28:00 -0500 en text/html
Killexams : What Is Regulation E in Electronic Fund Transfers (EFTs)?

What Is Regulation E?

Regulation E is a regulation put forth by the Federal Reserve Board that outlines rules and procedures for electronic funds transfers (EFTs) and provides guidelines for issuers of electronic debit cards. The regulation is meant to protect banking customers who use electronic methods to transfer money.

Understanding Regulation E

Regulation E provides guidelines for consumers and banks or other financial institutions in the context of EFTs. These include transfers with automated teller machines (ATMs), point of sale transactions, and Automated Clearing House (ACH) systems. Rules pertaining to consumer liability for unauthorized card usage fall under this regulation as well.

Consumers and financial institutions both have an interest in understanding Regulation E’s guidelines.

Regulation E was issued by the Federal Reserve (Fed) as an implementation of the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, a law passed by the U.S. Congress in 1978 as a means of protecting consumers engaged in these sorts of financial transactions.

Much of Regulation E outlines the procedures that consumers must follow in reporting errors with EFTs, and the steps that a bank must take to provide recourse. Errors subject to these regulations could include the consumer’s receipt of an incorrect amount of money from an ATM, unauthorized credit or debit card activity, or an unauthorized wire transfer to or from a consumer’s account. 

Key Takeaways

  • Regulation E outlines rules for electronic funds transfers and provides guidelines for issuers and sellers of debit cards.
  • It was enacted to protect consumers.
  • It’s essential for both consumers and financial institutions to have an interest in understanding Regulation E’s guidelines.

Generally, banks have a period of 10 business days during which to investigate a reported EFT error. This can, however, be extended to 45 business days provided that the bank provisionally credits the consumer’s account with the reportedly missing funds. Banks then must report the results of an investigation to the Fed and to the consumer.

Regulation E also outlines consumer responsibility for reporting unauthorized EFT activity, typically involving a stolen or missing card. For example, consumers must report lost or stolen credit cards no more than two days after the consumer becomes aware of the theft; otherwise, the bank has no obligation to refund losses.

Regulation E governs the issuance of debit but not credit cards, which are governed by regulations outlined in the Truth in Lending Act and implemented by the Fed as Regulation Z. However, Regulation E does govern EFT features of credit card usage.

Special Considerations

Consumers should make sure that they are complying with federal regulations when reporting errors, to make sure that their financial institutions are complying and to avoid liability. Financial institutions should circulate these regulations internally to make sure that they have no difficulty in complying. 

Example of Regulation E

If you have a bank account, Regulation E has some important benefits. It delineates your rights for disputing ATM or debit card transactions if you believe an EFT has been made in error.

This includes counterfeit errors as well as accidental ones. For example, if you decide to cancel a TV streaming subscription service, but you see an additional charge for membership after the cancellation, you could ask the streaming service for a refund, and if you are refused, you could dispute the transaction with your bank according to Regulation E rules.

Enforcement of Regulation E

Very specific rules for compliance by the EFT service provider are established in Regulation E. These requirements include keeping track of consumer agreements, providing periodic statements, error resolution, reimbursement of fees incorrectly charged to the consumer, providing access to account information, disclosing a telephone number that the consumer can use to contact the financial institution, and so on.

Enforcement depends on various sources of information to identify possible issues that may lead to opening an investigation, including:

  • Consumer complaints
  • The whistleblower hotline of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)
  • Referrals from federal regulators and other local, state, and federal agencies
  • Market intelligence
  • The results of supervisory exams

Other factors that weigh in on whether an investigation is initiated include if:

  • There is a set of facts that, if proven, would amount to a violation of one or more federal consumer financial laws
  • There is reason to believe that one or more entities is involved in the conduct described in the facts
  • There is evidence of a level of harm that justifies use of resources
  • There are enough resources available to address the matter

A description of the CFPB’s enforcement work (November 2020) can be found here.

How does Regulation E protect me?

Regulation E allows you to dispute these types of errors:

  • Unauthorized electronic funds transfers (EFTs)
  • Incorrect EFTs to or from your account
  • Omission of an EFT from your bank statement
  • Computational or bookkeeping errors made by your bank regarding an EFT
  • Receipt of an incorrect amount of money from an automated teller machine (ATM) or other electronic terminal
  • Errors involving pre-authorized transfers
  • Requests for additional information or clarification concerning an EFT (citation)

How does Regulation E protect me if my debit card is stolen?

Regulation E limits your liability if your debit card is lost or stolen. The sooner that you report a lost or stolen debit card, the lower your maximum liability is if unauthorized charges are made with the card. The longer that you wait to report a lost or stolen debit card, the higher your personal liability will be if the card is used for unauthorized charges.

A guide to consumer liability for lost or stolen debit cards can be found here.

Does Regulation E cover credit cards?

The Bottom Line

Regulation E was enacted under the CFPB, the regulatory agency that oversees financial products and services offered to consumers. The CFPB was created in 2010. Regulation E establishes the basic rights, liabilities, and responsibilities of consumers who use EFTs and remittance transfer services, and of the financial institutions or others that offer these services.

Thu, 13 Aug 2020 02:40:00 -0500 en text/html
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