Which of the following defenses would be least helpful to West in avoiding liability to Hex?
a. West was not in privity of contract with Hex.
b. West conducted the audit in accordance with GAAS.
c. Hex’s losses were caused by factors other than the misstatements.
d. Hex knew of the misstatements when Hex acquired the preferred stock.
West & Co., CPAs, rendered an unmodified opinion on the financial statements of Pride Corp., which were included in Pride’s registration statement filed with the SEC. Subsequently, Hex purchased 500 shares of Pride’s preferred stock as part of a public offering subject to the Securities Act of 1933. Hex has commenced an action against West based on the Securities Act of 1933 for losses resulting from misstatements of facts in the financial statements included in the registration statement.