November 10 is International Accounting Day or, as it's sometimes called, International Accountant‚Äôs Day. Let's celebrate by going over the history of this holiday, as well as some of the fun facts about this profession.
International Accounting Day is celebrated today because it marks the anniversary of the publication of the first book that provided a detailed description of double-entry bookkeeping. The book was called "Summa de Arithmetica, Geometria, Proportioni et Proportionalita" or "Everything About Arithmetic, Geometry and Proportion."
While this wasn't the first time double-entry bookkeeping was used, this is commonly seen as the first time it was ever published. The author, Luca Bartolomeo de Pacioli, was an Italian mathematician and referred to as the "The Father of Accounting and Bookkeeping." His publication is widely considered the foundation of modern-day accounting.
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To celebrate today, let's go over some fun facts about famous accountants and some data about the field.
Did you know that an accountant invented modern bubble gum? Walter Diemer was working at Fleer as an accountant and the company made gum that wasn't selling well. The gum was too sticky and easily broke. Diemer enjoyed experimenting with gum recipes and stumbled upon a hit recipe. Dubbed "Dubble Bubble," this gum was tasty, less sticky than existing gum and chewers could easily blow bubbles.
Unfortunately, Diemer didn't patent his invention but he didn't let that get him down. In his old age, he reportedly rode his large tricycle around his retirement village. He gave out bubble gum to the local children during his rides.
Many accountants genuinely enjoy their professions. A survey by Accountemps found 70 percent of accountants said they'd stick with the field even if they could go back in time and change their profession. I'm sure you may not feel that way 100% of the time – say, when your clients tell you their business mileage is "same as last year" during the busy tax time. Still, it's nice to know that many in the field would do it all over again if they had the chance.
Bob Newhart started his career practicing accounting. J. P. Morgan also started out as a junior account. Even more celebrities studied accounting at some point including Janet Jackson, Mick Jagger, John Grisham, Kenny G, Eddie Izzard and Robert Plant.
I guess we all have to give Ben Affleck an honorary slot here thanks to his movie The Accountant. I'm not quite sure this is an accurate representation of the field, though.
The most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics said there were more than 1.3 million jobs for accounting in the United States. This includes a variety of roles including enrolled agents, corporate accounting, auditors, tax preparers and more. Even the FBI needs accountants, as the federal agency employs more than 2,000 accountants to help it go after criminals.
While you may not get the next Janet Jackson to ditch the stage for a career in accounting, the field has a bright future. The Bureau of Labor Statistics said the field is projected to grow 11 percent by 2024. Once again, we want to say "thank you" for all the great work accountants, enrolled agents, book keepers and all you tax professionals do. If you want to save yourself some headaches at tax time while also saving your clients time and money, be sure to check out MileIQ for Tax Pros.
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