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FRC appointment

Skeoch lined up as interim boss of audit body

Keith Skeoch

Keith Skeoch: expected to take interim role

Standard Life Aberdeen’s outgoing CEO Keith Skeoch is expected to become interim chairman of the audit regulator.

Mr Skeoch will step in at the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) on a temporary basis following the sudden departure of Simon Dingemans in May.

Alok Sharma, the Business Secretary, is likely to announce Mr Skeoch’s appointment later this month, according to Sky News. Mr Skeoch has been on the watchdog’s board since March 2012

The change of leadership comes at a time when the FRC’s own future is still to be resolved.

Former Treasury mandarin Sir John Kingman, who now chairs Legal & General and Edinburgh-based Tesco Bank, proposed last year that the FRC should be abolished and replaced by a statutory body called the Audit, Reporting and Governance Authority.

Mr Sharma has said he is minded to implement Sir John’s recommendations as well as a separate review of auditing by the City grandee Sir Donald Brydon.

The FRC recently confirmed plans to press ahead with the effective break-up of the big four auditors – Deloitte, EY, KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers – by forcing them to separate their audit and consulting operations.

Under its proposals, they must submit detailed blueprints to the FRC during the autumn, with “operational separation” coming into effect in 2024.

The shake-up will represent a radical overhaul of the big four’s businesses, and has been sparked by public and political outrage over a string of audit failures at companies, such as Bhs and Carillion.

Mr Skeoch announced his departure from Standard Life Aberdeen in June. He will be replaced by former Citigroup executive Stephen Bird

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