When Accounting Gets Creative

Published on
April 27th, 2017
36 minutes

When Accounting Gets Creative

Think Piece ·
Featuring Robert Medd

Published on: April 27th, 2017 • Duration: 36 minutes

Robert Medd exposes creative accounting at listed companies and there can be a fine line between these practices and the large scale frauds where people go to jail. Sounding concern over the legitimacy of the audit profession that signs off on behavior like debt manipulation and pension assumptions, Rob highlights how large bonuses and option schemes are being collected, while investors pay the price. Filmed on March 3, 2017 in Hong Kong.


  • MN
    Mark N.
    21 October 2017 @ 22:48
    I'm only six minutes into this and I already love it. Brilliant brilliant brilliant. Great interviewee, love the way he thinks, his passion and the way he explains things. Going to look into these guys. Well done RV!
  • HK
    H K.
    4 July 2017 @ 18:54
    Another interview you will never hear from the MSM, the system is very flimsy at best. Audit firms and rating agencies that are charged with this responsibility fail almost everytime! We need a lot more moral capitalists!!! Thanks RVTV
  • HK
    H K.
    4 July 2017 @ 18:54
    Another interview you will never hear from the MSM, the system is very flimsy at best. Audit firms and rating agencies that are charged with this responsibility fail almost everytime! We need a lot more moral capitalists!!! Thanks RVTV
  • PM
    Peter M.
    16 May 2017 @ 06:53
    So lets start a movement to either force all companies to report al earnings according to FASB and not skirt it by simply noting exceptions. Actually why bother with audit reports which are meaningless and have been for the past 20 years! This is from a retired accountant and Certified Fraud Examiner. After that take a swipe at Executive compensation committees and eliminate the 'standard' performance bonus scam.
  • AC
    Andrew C.
    7 May 2017 @ 06:41
    Excellent discussion. But Let's face it. The authorities are in on this and it will be very hard to change this system of deception and creative accounting. For example, the ratings agencies got away with it in 2008, dodgy ratings of all those assets. Their whole business was fraudulent and they should've been put out of business. Is there perhaps a website out there listing just these anomalies (without the baggage of zero hedge)? Mr Medd's examples here could easily be depicted as screenshots from the annual reports.
  • sr
    sam r.
    3 May 2017 @ 18:03
    Brilliant interview, loved how he explained what can be quite complex so simply.
  • PD
    Peter D.
    2 May 2017 @ 12:15
    This is great stuff. This guy is spot on, with one caveat: things are likely far worse than he describes. RV should definitely get him back to talk about more specific examples. Particularly in the pension, off-balance sheet and derivatives areas.
  • TH
    Timo H.
    1 May 2017 @ 07:41
    The biggest accounting assumptions of them all are made by the central banks. Now think about that for a moment...
  • HB
    Hector B.
    1 May 2017 @ 06:03
    Excellent interview. Bring him back with more time.
  • KS
    Kazi S.
    1 May 2017 @ 05:11
    Super interview.
  • AH
    Andreas H.
    30 April 2017 @ 20:44
  • tw
    thomas w.
    30 April 2017 @ 19:47
    Greart - keep up the work.
  • BL
    Bruce L.
    30 April 2017 @ 17:16
    Bravo. This man a a new hero for me.
  • GP
    Gordon P.
    30 April 2017 @ 16:23
    Awesome, enjoyed listening -- thanks for showing interview
  • MA
    Mike A.
    30 April 2017 @ 01:54
    Entertaining , insightful, and spot on. Well worth watching.
  • GM
    Greg M.
    29 April 2017 @ 21:05
    Im glad they re-released the interview. Very entertaining. Could have listened to him longer.
  • ww
    will w.
    29 April 2017 @ 12:09
    this "creative accounting" IS Fraud! There are 2 basic legal 'elements' necessary to establish a case of fraud: 1. Deception; 2. harm caused by that deception. BRAVO!!! to Robert Medd. Let's agitate - early & often - for his reform suggestions.
  • PS
    Paul S.
    29 April 2017 @ 03:24
    With the actual numbers being fiddled so much - imagine the nonsense in the 'adjusted non-GAAP' numbers so popular now when reporting 'EPS beats'
  • DM
    Daniel M.
    28 April 2017 @ 17:40
    I wish he would have talked about Tesla. They definitely use some creative accounting!
  • SD
    Stephen D. | Contributor
    28 April 2017 @ 02:36
    Oustanding! a modern Diogenes. The real point for me is that just as we get the politicians we deserve, we get the CEO's and auditors we deserve. If collectively as investors we stood us to this chicanery and sacked people who did it, via effective Board, it would cease. But our laziness and hopefulness stops us. We should all be more like Rob Medd
  • MM
    Michael M.
    27 April 2017 @ 23:46
    very likeable dude and interesting field.
  • PB
    Pieter B.
    18 March 2017 @ 13:51
    Great piece that confirms what I always thought is a conflict of interest. Thank you!
  • DT
    Dave T.
    18 March 2017 @ 09:36
    Perhaps it's time for Mr. Medd to turn his hand to real fiction. It would be a hoot. A great take on accounting for this non-accountant. Would like to see more.
  • sa
    sonny a.
    18 March 2017 @ 03:44
    Great interview!!
  • SC
    Shane C.
    18 March 2017 @ 00:54
    Very important for everyone esepecially deep fundamental research...love the name by the way...greatest war horse of all time
  • BF
    Bruce F.
    18 March 2017 @ 00:19
    a disciple of the late Abraham Brtilloff, who wrote books on the same subject. the work is essential
  • HJ
    Harry J.
    17 March 2017 @ 20:58
    I'm glad he's bemused. I'm sickened
  • HJ
    Harry J.
    17 March 2017 @ 20:53
    Not knowing who is who gives rise to a jaded view on the part of the investors
  • dd
    darrell d.
    17 March 2017 @ 19:54
    Being an accountant I had a chuckle about the pension liability and 3 years short deaths. We can be a sneaky bunch.
  • GG
    Gerald G.
    17 March 2017 @ 19:19
    Hmmm...Mr. Med says that, when looking for this kind of unethical behaviour, he identifies companies with: 1) lots of debt 2) that are at their peak or declining 3) have a single powerful leader Does any of that sound familiar??? HOW ABOUT THE USA dummies!!!!! It's sort of hard to get too outraged by any of his revelations when the US government has been "creatively" lying to the public ever since the Iraq war and now continues to do so with the reported economic "expansion" of the last 8 years.
  • CV
    Cesar V.
    17 March 2017 @ 18:57
    good stuff guys. As a former auditor of a big 4. I can say he was spot on in everything he said.
  • GG
    Gerald G.
    17 March 2017 @ 18:18
    Awesome interview but, let's face it, anyone who has being paying attention has known (for a very long time) that the entire system is rife with abuse. What I'd love to see is a recognition that this kind of "creativity" has also been pervasive in the governments reporting of the economic "expansion" since 2009.
  • HK
    Himali K.
    17 March 2017 @ 17:41
    Spot on for Noble Group. Very insightful.
  • SB
    Sam B.
    17 March 2017 @ 17:37
    Coolest forensic accountant I've ever encountered... could listen to this guy talk about anything. Reminds me not only of the Harry Markopolos interview, but also the one with Benoit Descourtieux. Both worth a look.
  • TS
    Tim S.
    17 March 2017 @ 17:14
    Appreciated this interview. It reminds me to be more cognizant of financial engineering, I always watch when a CFO departs and a quarter later miracles "happen" but this points out an entire new level of creative accounting. Excellent job!
  • JC
    Jan C.
    17 March 2017 @ 17:05
    I couldn't stop laughing at this tragic/comic presentation. If George Carlin had been a forensic accountant, this would be his presentation! Well done!
  • SS
    Sam S.
    17 March 2017 @ 14:48
    The fraudsters are running the world but people everywhere are pushing back. They can't hide forever, just like the sun, the moon and the truth. Excellent "real vision" discussion. More please!
  • GC
    Gary C.
    17 March 2017 @ 14:01
    Delighted RV is putting sunshine into the accounting world with this and the Harry Markopolus interview. Makes one pause a bit when voting to approve the accounting firm.
  • NG
    Nitin G.
    17 March 2017 @ 11:57
    Amazing interview !! Creative accounting is an area where we all should dip our feet in because every public company is rushing up to meet the expectations !