Statutory audit of banks involves a number of peculiarities due to some unique features of banks and banking operations e.g. huge volumes and complexity of transactions, wide geographical spread of banks’ network, large range of products and services offered, extensive use of technology, strict vigilance by the banking regulator etc. All these factors make the task of statutory auditors of banks quite challenging in maintaining quality in bank audits.

The Auditing and Assurance Standards Board of ICAI has been helping the members in maintaining quality in statutory audit of Scheduled Commercial Banks by bringing out the publication “Guidance Note on Audit of Banks” every year to provide detailed guidance to the members conducting audits of banks and their branches. The Guidance Note is updated every year to incorporate the recent updates, impact of amendments and changes in banking environment which require attention of statutory auditors, such as, master directions/circulars of RBI, relevant advisories, pronouncements of ICAI having bearing on bank audits and amendments/changes in applicable laws or regulations.

We are happy to place in your hands this revised 2022 edition of the Guidance Note on Audit of Banks. The Guidance Note is divided into two Sections i.e. Section A – Statutory Central Audit and Section B – Bank Branch Audit. For benefit of the members, the Guidance Note also contains various Appendices like illustrative formats of engagement letter, illustrative formats of auditor’s report both in case of nationalized banks and banking companies, illustrative formats of management representation letter, the text of master directions, master circulars and other relevant circulars issued by the RBI. The revised Guidance Note was initially developed by a study group constituted by the Board for this purpose and thereafter it was finalised with the contribution of the Board members and the Central Council members.

The members may note that the Auditing and Assurance Standards Board has also issued two separate publications i.e. “Technical Guide on Audit of Internal Financial Controls in case of Public Sector Banks” and “Technical Guide on
Revised Formats of Long Form Audit Report” which are relevant for bank audits. Accordingly, we request the members to use this Guidance Note in conjunction with the aforesaid publication.

Guidance Note on Audit of Banks (2022 Edition)

(Republished with Amendments)

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