#InternationalAccountingDay2023 - History, Importance & Celebration
History of Accounting
International Accounting Day is celebrated on November 10th every year, and as this year’s day approaches, let’s think about the important history of accountants.
Accounting has a long history, going back thousands of years. It is a discipline.
Around 4,000 BC, the Sumerians in Mesopotamia used clay tablets to record money exchanges. We needed these records to manage resources and make sure exchanges were accurate. The ancient Egyptians recorded farming and taxes to maintain an organised society.
As societies evolved, accounting and finance methods became more sophisticated. Aristotle and Plato, two ancient Greek philosophers, discussed the value of ethical accounting. The Roman Empire had a big impact on accounting. They used double-entry bookkeeping, which is still used today.
In the Middle Ages, European merchants used accounting to manage their businesses and trade. In 1494, Luca Pacioli, an Italian mathematician and friar, published a book. The book was called “Summa de Arithmetica, Geometria, Proportioni et Proportionalita.” It explained double-entry bookkeeping principles in detail. Luca Pacioli is known as the “Father of Accounting.”
In the 18th and 19th centuries, businesses grew larger and more complex during the Industrial Revolution. This led to important improvements in accounting. During this time, professional accounting groups were created, and auditing standards were developed. These measures helped guarantee accurate and transparent financial reporting.
In the 1900s, computers and new rules changed accounting and finance a lot. These set rules and methods have made it easier for companies to do accounting and work better. They provide a common framework for accounting and financial reporting. This framework is within the boundaries of a regulated accounting industry.
Today, accounting is changing to fit the business world. It uses technology and deals with globalisation and financial rules. No matter who we are, we must be wise with our money. This applies to everyone: individuals, public officials, and small business owners. They need to make smart choices and focus on honesty.
History of International Accounting Day
Accountants worldwide celebrate International Accounting Day, a new tradition observed globally. On November 10th, we honour accountants for their important role in the world economy. Yet, it is not a public holiday. This day’s origin is not as old as accounting, but it has gained importance recently. Accountants are important in various locations, and this helps the profession gain recognition.
Financial companies and organisations created the day to promote and share accounting knowledge. They also wanted to create unity among accountants worldwide.
International Accounting Day brings accounting professionals, firms, schools, and stakeholders together. They organize events and discussions to discuss new trends and challenges in accounting.
The event celebrates the profession’s commitment to honesty and boosting the economy worldwide.
The day has become more important as finance has become vital to the global economy. Finance contributes to transparency, accountability, and sustainable financial practices across borders.
Accountant’s Day Around the World
Accountants’ Day is a special day to appreciate and recognise accountants worldwide. The date and name can vary by location, but the purpose remains the same: to honour and thank accountants for their vital role in finance.
On May 22nd, each year, Americans celebrate National Accountants’ Day. Accountants, auditors, and financial professionals are appreciated on this day. Organisations and governments rely on them to explain finances.
How Do I Become an International Accountant?
If your personal choice is to have an accounting career, then there are a few steps you have to follow:
- Bachelor’s Degree. Having a bachelor’s degree in finance or business is not required, but it could be helpful.
- Get an accounting certification. It takes 2-3 years to finish an accounting course for certification, like CPA or CFA. Having certification is important for career growth because all accountants worldwide need it. The courses also provide valuable skills that can be enhanced with work experience.
- Internship or work experience You can apply for internships with accounting firms at different career stages. Combining work and study, you can start your journey there. When looking for a job like a financial controller or analyst, make sure your skills are a good match.
Is Accounting a Stressful Job?
The right answer is that it doesn’t need to be. Modern technology has transformed the role. It used to be about number crunching, but now it’s about data analytics and advisory. Anyone can succeed in the role, as long as they have the right skills and technology.
How To Celebrate International Accounting Day
Here are some ideas to celebrate International Accounting Day:
- Organise a networking event for accountants, financial professionals, and students to connect.
- Celebrate the achievements of exceptional accountants in your business, community, or industry.
- Organise career fairs and events at schools to assist finance and accounting students.
Accountants Who Held Offenders To Account
The former chairman of President Trump’s campaign, Paul Manafort, was imprisoned in 2019 for white-collar crimes such as conspiracy and money laundering. Morgan Magiono, an FBI forensic accountant, examined a large volume of correspondence, agreements, bills, and title documents pertaining to real estate holdings in order to do this.
She was able to provide evidence of how Manafort oversaw a system of offshore bank accounts that sent an astounding $16 million in undisclosed income to numerous American businesses—funds he used to support his own extravagant lifestyle.
Morgan Magionos understood complicated money deals and found big fraud. The documents she found were important in proving Paul Manafort’s illegal actions. The defence raised doubts about the statements of some witnesses. The introduced documents were even more important in this context.
Magionos’ work was instrumental in securing a conviction.
In 2002, American auditor Cynthia Cooper gained international attention when she revealed accounting fraud at WorldCom, a massive telecommunications company.
As Vice President of Internal Audit for the organisation, Cooper frequently worked late into the night and covertly to look into and uncover the $3.8 billion fraud that was the foundation of WorldCom’s financial statements.
Influential Time magazine named her one of its three 2002 “People of the Year,” a testament to her boldness and honesty.
“Extraordinary Circumstances: The Journey of a Corporate Whistleblower,” her book on the incident, was released in 2008.
Frank J. Wilson
It was the work of accountants and forensic auditors that helped bring Al Capone to justice. Frank J. Wilson, a tax inspector for the US government, oversaw the IRS’s investigation into Capone’s finances. Capone was involved in illegal activities, such as making and selling illegal alcohol and gambling. He also committed other crimes. Yet he avoided being found guilty for a long time. This was partly because he had allies who protected him from the police.
The accountants looked at his financial records, bank accounts, and expenses. They wanted to find out where his illegal income came from. They also wanted to prove that he didn’t pay taxes on this money.
In 1931, Capone was convicted of income tax evasion and sentenced to prison. Accountants and financial experts proved his guilt, even without modern technology. Everyone knew he was breaking the law, but he was caught for his financial crimes and tax evasion.
These cases show how forensic accounting and financial analysis can catch powerful criminals.
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