Auditing is carried out by teams of staff headed by qualified accountants who are independent of
the business. Essentially, auditors check that the financial statements, prepared by management,
give a true and fair view of the accounts. Auditing is normally associated with company
accounts. However, the tax authorities or the bank may request an audit of the accounts of
sole traders or partnerships. For companies, auditors issue an auditor’s report annually to
shareholders. The Company Camera 1.2 provides an auditors’ report for J. Sainsbury plc. This
is issued after a thorough examination by the auditors of the accounting records and systems
of the company. Auditors charge management an audit fee. For example, KPMG, a firm of
auditors, charged HSBC Holdings £11.4 million in 2004 for auditing and consultancy services.