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  • Writer's pictureDaniel Goelzer

Who Audits Public Companies? Mostly Ten Firms

Ideagen Audit Analytics (AA) has released its annual analysis of the market for public company auditing.  2024 who audits public companies finds that ten firms audit 68 percent of the total SEC-registered company population (including SPACs), while the four largest firms – EY, Deloitte, PwC, and KPMG – audit 48.4 percent. EY leads the pack at 14.7 percent (971 public company clients).  According to AA’s blog post on the 2024 report, the majority of the top ten firms reduced their public company audit client count from the prior year, although Deloitte added 13 clients to a total of 900.  Overall, 239 firms conducted audits of 6,607 SEC registrants. By comparison, in 2023, 258 firms performed audit engagements for 6,950 SEC registrants. 


Not surprisingly, the audit market for the largest public companies -- large accelerated filers (LAFs) -- is highly concentrated.  The four largest firms audited 90 percent of these companies, up two percent from last year.  As it has for the past eight years, EY also leads in this segment with 577 LAF clients (down from 600 in 2023) or approximately 28 percent of the LAF population.  Thirty-one other firms audited the 10 percent of LAFs that were not Big Four clients.  Grant Thorton, at 4 percent, performed about 40 percent of those engagements.  Since last year’s analysis, the total number of LAFs decreased by 3 percent.


At the other end of the public company size spectrum – smaller reporting companies (SRCs) – there is considerably more competition.  Altogether, 122 firms audited the 340 SRC registrants.  Six firms -- BF Borgers, M&K CPAs, Victor Mokuolo CPA, Assurance Dimensions, RBSM LLP, and JP Centurion – together audited 30 percent of SRCs.  The remaining 70 percent of the SRC market is audited by 116 other firms, of which 57 had only one SRC client.  The population of SRC filers decreased 9 percent from last year, and the number of firms auditing SRC clients fell from 136 to 122.

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