Date posted: 31/03/2023

Key audit matters in Australia

Insights into Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) listed entities key audit matters (KAMs) in 2022

In brief

  • Covers reporting periods ending 31 December 2021 to 30 September 2022
  • The average number of KAMs per audit report in 2022 is consistent with 2021
  • The most frequent KAM subject matter continues to be impairment

Updated research by CA ANZ, the University of Melbourne and the University of Queensland has found that both the average number of Key Audit Matters (KAMs) (2022: 1.80, 2021: 1.84) and the subject matter is approximately the same in 2022 compared to 2021. The most frequent KAM subject matter continues to be impairment, representing 17% (2021: 18%) of all KAMs. 

Our previous report looked at the reporting of key audit matters (KAMs) in auditors’ reports of Australian ASX listed entities that issued financial statements in 2021 (balances date between 31 December 2020 and 30 September 2021).

This report provides an update to that research for financial statements issued in 2022 (balances date between 31 December 2021 and 30 September 2022). 

Similar to our first report we sampled the full population of ASX listed entities and examined both the frequency and nature of KAMs.

Key findings:

  • Overall, 58% of audit reports have the same number of KAMs as last year.
  • or the 42% of audit reports that had a different number of KAMs this is mostly due to an increase (decrease) of a single KAM 17% (18%).
  • The primary subject matter explaining both the increase and decrease is business combinations.