EXTERNAL AUDIT is an audit conducted by an individual or firm that is independent of the company being audited. These independent auditors audit the books of a company generally once per year (see INTERIM AUDIT) after the completion of the companys fiscal year. Their role is to give an opinion of the financials statements reflection of the status and operations of the company being audited. Based on what they witness during the audit they will also produce, for management and board utilization, a management letter. Although a financial statement audit is the most common type of external audit, external auditors may also conduct special purpose audits which might include; performing specific tests and procedures and reporting on the results, a less intensive review, and compilations.
GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY OFFICE (GAO) is the organization in the U.S. Congress that investigates the performance of the federal government. GAO evaluates the use of public funds and the performance of federal programs, while also providing analytical, investigative and legal services in order to support to Congress in its policy formulation and decision making processes. Most GAO reports are initiated at the request of Congress, while some are initiated by the agency itself or are required by law.
DEPRECIABLE COST is fixed asset cost that is subject to depreciation. Depreciable cost equals acquisition cost less salvage value.
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