Gross revenue of the Big Four accounting / audit firms in the U.S. 2018

Gross revenue of the Big Four accounting / audit firms in the United States in 2018 (in billion U. S. dollars)

by E. Mazareanu, last edited Oct 21, 2019
Gross revenue of the Big Four accounting / audit firms in the U.S. 2018 Deloitte generated the largest revenue in the United States of the Big Four accounting firms in 2018, earning around 4.5 billion U.S dollars more than their nearest competitor PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). The rankings mirror the worldwide performance of the Big Four firms, with Deloitte and PwC again competing for the top two positions.

Deloitte’s operations in the Americas

Deloitte reported revenue figures of around 22 billion U.S dollars for North and South America combined in 2018, of which approximately 20 billion U.S. dollars came in revenues from the United States. In recent years, the performance of Deloitte in the United States has improved year-on-year - revenue increased by more than one billion U.S. dollars between 2017 and 2018. The growing number of employees at Deloitte provides another indication of the firm’s stature throughout North and South America. Deloitte employed in excess of 139,000 staff members across the Americas in 2019 – an increase of 11 percent on the previous year – and of all the leading accounting firms in the United States, Deloitte employed by far the most members of staff.

The Big Eight of the Eighties

There are four major accounting firms in the world today: Deloitte, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Ernst and Young (EY), and Klynveld Peat Marwick Goerdeler (KPMG). However, the professional accounting landscape was far different for much of the 20th century, with eight firms competing for the same major clients. The growth of multinational clients in a global economy changed the industry during the 1980s. In order to gain a strong foothold in the new international market, two mega mergers took place in 1989 that involved four of the Big Eight firms: Ernst and Whinney merged with Arthur Young to form Ernst and Young, and Deloitte Haskins and Sells merged with Touche Ross to form Deloitte and Touche. This was the start of the Big Eight gradually being reduced to the Big Four.
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Gross revenue of the Big Four accounting / audit firms in the United States in 2018 (in billion U. S. dollars)

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