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Debit, ribbit

Netnet Camomot

THE Continuing Professional Development (CPD) units required in renewing our professional license have been “inspiring” us to join seminars on accounting, auditing, the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (Train), etc.

To encourage us to participate in the discussion, a resource speaker would present an accounting scenario and open his question with, Debit…? Meaning, what account to debit for that particular transaction.

It’s not exactly Accounting 101 anymore but there’s a hush in the room, with each of us waiting for the speaker to call our name. No one dares to answer. Most probably we’re all shy? Or it brings us back to college days and review classes. Whew. Define trauma.

We know the answer but would rather stare into space until the speaker finally gets it that we’re not interested at all in audience participation.

At least, the speakers are funny and able to simplify accounting, auditing, and even the Train for us, although with all that info in a day, retention might be reduced to… Hmmm, gotta compute the ratio for this: what my minute brain remembers divided by the whole module equals…

To end the seminar on Thursday, the speaker asked us to compute the Altman Z-score of a US-based telecom which became notorious for an accounting scandal that eventually led to its bankruptcy in the early 21st century, with its founder and former CEO ending up jailed for 25 years.

The Altman Z-score is a gauge for the possibility of a firm’s—gasp!—bankruptcy. It has five ratios to compute, the results of which are then added to get the Z-score.

The speaker advised for us to compute our own Z-score, too, once we’re home. Uh. Is that before or after paying the registration fee?

These seminars are costly. I paid P12,000 for a six-seminar package here in Cagayan de Oro for January to March 2018. We have to avail of the ones conducted here and have been asking the local accredited CPD provider to conduct more seminars each month. This is the better option compared to spending more money for out-of-town seminars which of course would include travel and accommodation expenses.

A doctor, who had to travel to Iloilo and Manila to earn her CPD units, told me that certified public accountants (CPA) have the highest required number of CPD units. Oh, my.

Apparently, at least one foreign country also requires its CPAs to earn 120 CPD units but the actual reason could be this: the Professional Regulatory Board of Accountancy wants to make the Pinoy CPA more competitive not only in Pinas but in the whole universe. To infinity and beyond!

Meanwhile, I’m having fun in these seminars. I look forward to the food. I mean, I paid for that, too. Might as well savor each and every bite. Yum!

Most of the attendees are millennials. I guess my batch mates have chosen to use their expired Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) ID cards as remembrance—and glued that to their college diplomas for their children and grandchildren to ooh and aah over.

Politicians don’t have to earn CPD units before they can be reelected. All they need are votes. I wish that’s true for CPAs and other professions, too. Say, 120 votes for a CPA and—voila—license renewed!

A friend, who’s also a CPA, tried computing the total amount we have to spend for these seminars before we can renew our PRC IDs and she came up with P30,000 for those held in CDO. Out-of-town seminars will definitely cost more due to plane tickets and hotels.

What to do with that P30,000 if there’s no CPD? Let’s calculate the ways. That’s 150 movies. Or 20 dinners for two at Italianni’s. Or 176 McDo McChicken sandwich value meals. So, the CPD will make me watch fewer movies and lose weight. Yay!

Yes, we now prefer McDo, hoping to get a glimpse of Gabby Concepcion and Sharon Cuneta while we’re there.

Is Gabby a debit or a credit for Ate Shawie? Well, it depends. Asset is debit; revenue is credit. Which do you prefer?

And, no, debit doesn’t sound like a frog: ribbit, ribbit, ribbit…

Accounting and auditing are branches of common sense. All you need is a skeptical mind to audit anything. Besides, it’s always debit and credit, with all columns for each transaction balanced and without an extra centavo. If there’s an excess, even if it’s one cent, you have to go back and look for the culprit behind the discrepancy.

An accountant could spend a sleepless night looking for that one cent. Or he may choose not to since accounting is an art…

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