Thursday, December 3, 2009

IFRS News Roundup

This news roundup is courtesy of the AICPA, and includes a plug for their product at the end.

Monitoring Board lauds convergence talks between IASB, FASBThe Monitoring Board, a key accounting oversight panel, said it is pleased with the direction of the convergence talks between the International Accounting Standards Board and the Financial Accounting Standards Board. "The Monitoring Board is pleased by the responsive approach of the IASB and the FASB to address concerns regarding the potential for the IASB and the FASB to reach different [conclusions] on the major projects," the board said. Accountancy Age (London)

Will convergence be enough?: If efforts to merge international accounting standards are successful, the idea of U.S. companies having to switch standards may become a nonissue, according to this article. The Financial Accounting Standards Board and the International Accounting Standards Board are trying to complete their convergence projects in 2011. CFO Magazine

IASB completes part of new financial-instruments accounting standardThe International Accounting Standards Board has published a new standard on classifying and measuring financial assets. The standard completes the first phase of a three-part project to replace IAS 39, Financial Instruments: Recognition and Measurement. (

IFRS aims to level playing field but causes some concernsThe possible adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards by the U.S. is meant to level the global playing field and make it easier to compare financial statements of companies around the world. However, as this article notes, critics and concerned parties say that the benefits of the global accounting standards would vary considerably among different companies in the U.S. (11/20)

EU postpones introduction of changes to accounting rulesA major overhaul of accounting rules for financial instruments came into force in much of the world recently, but the European Commission decided to postpone adoption of the rules. Analysts said the changes would disproportionately hit some European banks. Other banks in Europe are upset with the decision because they are concerned they will be at a disadvantage compared with their international counterparts. Financial Times (tiered subscription model) (11/13) , (11/13)

SEC's Casey urges continued development of single set of accounting standardsSecurities and Exchange Commission member Kathleen Casey called for continued efforts to converge international accounting standards. The SEC is considering a plan that would have companies use International Financial Reporting Standards. "The commission and the [Financial Accounting Standards Board] would be remiss and fail the needs of investors if we do not continue to support the development of a single set of high-quality global accounting standards," Casey said. Reuters (11/17)

Some companies may use new IASB rules despite delay in BrusselsSome European companies may prepare "proforma" accounts as if new accounting rules were in place even as the EU signals it may delay implementation of the so-called IFRS 9 rules. Four companies said they may use the rules to prepare accounts for internal use before the end of 2009. The new rules from the International Accounting Standards Board address how financial institutions value assets. For IFRS daily updates, training courses, case studies and other resources, visit Financial Times

OCC questions IASB's proposed loan-loss accounting standardJohn Dugan, comptroller of the currency, said a loan-loss accounting standard proposed by the International Accounting Standards Board is "potentially too restrictive." Dugan said accounting standard setters are heading in the right direction, but he raised concern about some of the proposals. "If expected loss is interpreted in a way that constrains it so you don't get to look forward, then we will not have made much progress," Dugan said.

CESR chairman says review of IASB governance is neededEddy Wymeersch, chairman of the Committee of European Securities Regulators, told the European Parliament's economic and monetary affairs committee that an assessment of the governance of the International Accounting Standards Board is needed. Wymeersch raised questions about the accountability of the accounting standards setter. The New York Times/Reuters

HSBC's CFO urges Europe to quickly adopt IFRS 9Douglas Flint, chief financial officer at HSBC, says he wants to see Europe adopt the International Accounting Standards Board's new rule on fair-value accounting, known as IFRS 9. Flint says he believes critics pressured the IASB for political purposes. "Many of the objectors to IFRS 9 sought to take the IASB to a position they knew it could never support, because their agenda was to create conflict with the IASB as part of a larger political agenda," Flint said. Accountancy Age (London)

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