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Statistics on accountancy firms by fee income/turnover

Sources for statistics on accountancy firms by fee income/turnover including data on the fee income split.

Fee income

United Kingdom: Top firms

Accountancy Daily

The Accountancy Daily Top 75 league table of UK accountancy firms provides details of the fee income for each firm and total fee income for the top 75. In some cases the article has included additional tables providing comparisons of the fee income split. The league table is published annually in Accountancy Daily.

Prior to 2019, the league table was published in Accountancy magazine. Recent editions can be accessed through the Accountancy Daily website at Top UK firms. Older surveys may be available from the ICAEW Library & Information Service which holds a complete run of Accountancy magazine.

Accountancy Age
The Accountancy Age survey is published annually and provides figures for the UK fee income in the top 50 accountancy firms. The 2009 edition of the survey was extended to the top 100.

The full tables for some years also show the split of income from audit/accounting, consultancy, corporate finance, corporate responsibility, forensic, insolvency, internal controls, payroll, pensions advice, personal finance and tax. 

You can access the list of firms at Accountancy Age: Top 50+50 Accountancy Firms 2020. Older surveys may be available from the ICAEW Library & Information Service which holds a complete run of Accountancy Age.

Global: Top firms

International Accounting Bulletin
The International Accounting Bulletin published an inaugural list of the top 100 largest professional services firms in the world (International Accounting Bulletin 452, 21 August 2009).

The ICAEW Library & Information Service holds a run of the International Accounting Bulletin from 1983 to date. The latest edition is available in the Library.

International: Top firms

The journal International Accounting Bulletin from Timetric is published twice a month and includes a series of country surveys which provide statistics on top firms and networks (usually the top 8-10). The data available on these firms includes fee income.

To see an up-to-date list of countries covered by these surveys you should consult the magazine, but as an indication the countries surveyed in the past have included:

  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • China
  • France
  • India
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Mexico
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Russia
  • South Africa
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Turkey
  • United States

The ICAEW Library & Information Service holds a run of the International Accounting Bulletin from 1983 to date. The latest edition is available in the Library.

To find out more about the availability of older issues please see Library holdings: International Accounting Bulletin.

For information on obtaining copies of individual issues of the International Accounting Bulletin please contact the publishers, Timetric.

Turnover

United Kingdom: All firms

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) publication UK Business: Size, Activity and Location provides statistics on the number of firms in seven size brackets, depending on their turnover (0-48, 60-99, 100-249, 250-499, 500-999, 1000-4999, 5000+ in thousands of pounds sterling).

The latest statistics for UK Business: Size, Activity and Location are available from the ONS. Data from previous releases can be accessed via the National Archives web site. If comparing figures from different releases, please note that various changes have been made to the coverage of businesses over the years. See the publication's methodology for details.

Turnover figures used by ONS are based on VAT returns for a 12 month period for the majority of traders. For more information see the turnover section of the UK Business: Size, Activity and Location methodology.

2014+

The figures for accountancy firms are published in dataset 'UKBGb Enterprise by 4 Digit SIC and Turnover size band'. The table shows statistics for a number of sectors and you will need to scroll right to find the appropriate UK SIC code for accounting, book-keeping and auditing activities; tax consultancy (6920 in UK SIC 2007).

2008-2013

The figures are published in Table B3.2: United Kingdom - Number of VAT and/or PAYE based enterprises in all industries by turnover size band. The table shows statistics for a number of sectors and you will need to scroll down to the appropriate UK SIC code for accounting, book-keeping and auditing activities; tax consultancy (7412 in UK SIC 2003 - as used in the 2008 publication, 6920 in UK SIC 2007 - as used from the 2009 publication onwards).

These statistics record both VAT and PAYE based enterprises using the UK SIC code for accounting, book-keeping and auditing activities; tax consultancy. As such, they include all firms with this classification - not just the member firms of the CCAB bodies.

1998-2007

Older editions of this publication are also available but it should be noted that the 2008 publication was 'the first to include businesses based on PAYE employers that are not also registered for VAT, extending the scope from the previous VAT-based tables.' This means that the figures from earlier editions cannot be compared directly with the 2008 edition or any subsequent editions.

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