Vatican suspends outside audit while reviewing contract

Four months after announcing it had hired the firm PricewaterhouseCoopers to conduct an external audit of its finances, the Vatican has suspended the work underway.

Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, told Catholic News Service April 21 that the audit had been paused because there are "underway detailed studies of some aspects relative to the agreement" reached with the firm, which is one of the largest auditing firms in the world.

According to the news site Vatican Insider, the problem was not connected to PricewaterhouseCoopers, which had just begun its work, but whether internal Vatican procedures were followed completely in offering a contract to the firm.

The Vatican had announced in early December that the Council for the Economy, "continuing the implementation of new financial management policies and practices in line with international standards," appointed PricewaterhouseCoopers on the recommendation of its audit committee.

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