Types of Audit Reports

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Form 8-K

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This form is used in reporting material changes that have occurred in a company which could be of significance to the company shareholders or the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). A company is required to file this form with the SEC whenever unscheduled material events take place in the company such as bankruptcy, the resignation of a director or the notification of a new deal. SEC requirements stipulate that these changes should be filed within a period of four business days from the day of their occurrence with the exception of Fair Disclosure, which should be submitted earlier than the four days deadline. This form may also be issued based on the occurrence of other events which are largely under the companys discretion but which the registrar of companies deems important for security holders ("SEC.gov | Home", 2016).

Form 10-K

This form is a comprehensive summary report of a companys performance which should be filed annually and submitted to the SEC. It usually contains many details than the annual report. The information contained in this form include the history of the company, the organizational structure, the companys earnings per share, companys subsidiaries, holdings, etc. This form should be submitted to the SEC 60-90 days after the companys fiscal year, depending on the category of the filing company. As fiscal years for different companies vary, the due dates for the filing of the form 10-K with the SEC will also vary. Companies are required to submit their quarterly reports on form 10-Q and the last their annual comprehensive summary in form 10-K (Asthana & Balsam, 2001).

Form 10-KSB

This is form is used by smaller firms to submit their annual report to the SEC. This form contains information about a companys ownership structure, its financial strength as well as corporate leadership. It should be submitted to the SEC 90 days after the end of the companys financial year. It is mostly used by potential investors to assess the financial performance of smaller businesses to assess their viability. These forms were however scrapped as from 2009 though the filed forms are still held in EDGAR database ("SEC.gov | Home", 2016).

General Motors Corporation auditor report for financial statements year ended 2003

The independent auditors report examines the financial statements of the company; that is the statement of both financial performance, financial position, and of cash flows as well as a statement of changes in equity to determine whether they are free from material misstatements. The audit also seeks to express an opinion on whether these financial statements have been prepared in conformity with accounting principles and evaluation of the accounting estimates made by the management. In this examination, the auditors present an unqualified opinion regarding the financial statements of General Motors Corp as at December 31, 2001, and 2002. The opinion states that the financial statements, in all material aspects, present a fair view of the financial status of the company. It also states that the company complied with the accounting principles accepted in the United States in the preparation of its financial statements. The company, effective as from January 1st, 2002 changed its method of accounting for goodwill and other intangible assets so as to comply and conform to accounting standard 142: Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets ("SEC.gov | Home", 2016).

Ford Motor Company independent auditors report

The audit opinion as contained in the report was provided by the internal audit committee, and not external audit. The report gives an unqualified opinion with regards to the financial statements of the company. The report states that the financial statements do not contain any material misstatements or omissions that would make the financial statements misleading for the period under consideration. The form does not have a clear independent audit report but has an assurance by the companys CEO that the financial statements as presented are free from material misstatements and represent, in all material aspects a fair view of the operations of the company under the year when the report was made.

The Home Depot independent auditors report

No explicit auditors report has been included in these forms for an accurate audit opinion to be made. However, based on the certification of the companys Chief Executive Officer, the financial statements do present a fair view of the financial status of the company. The financial statements are free from material misstatements and omissions which would be misleading to the users of the financial information during the year of this report (Asthana & Balsam, 2001).

Audit opinions

An unqualified opinion is issued when the financial statements of a company are free from material misstatements, and they have been prepared according to generally accepted accounting principles. Such opinions show that the financial statements as prepared by the management represent a true and fair view of the company operations.

An eligible opinion is dispensed when the monetary statements have not been prepared in conformity with the generally accepted accounting principles but is free from material misstatements.

An adverse opinion is issued when then financial statements do not conform to accepted accounting principles, and they have also been grossly misrepresented. This may be due to an error but at times it might be an indication of fraud.

Negation of opinion is issued when the auditor has not been furnished with adequate financial information necessary to come up with an opinion. This might be due to lack of cooperation on the part of the management ("SEC.gov | Home", 2016).


Asthana, S. & Balsam, S. (2001). The effect of EDGAR on the market reaction to 10-K filings. Journal Of Accounting And Public Policy, 20(4-5), 349-372. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/s0278-4254(01)00035-7

SEC.gov | Home. (2016). Sec.gov. Retrieved 17 July 2016, from https://www.sec.gov/

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