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June

Webcasts on IAS 39 – expected loss model

30 Jun 2009

On Friday 3 July 2009 and again on Monday 6 July 2009, the IASB will host two live webcasts to keep interested parties up to date on progress of the IASB's comprehensive project to replace IAS 39. The webcasts will focus on the Board's recently published Request for Information on the feasibility of an expected loss model.

The webcasts will include presentations by two IASB project staff people followed by a Q&A session where registered participants can send in questions for the IASB staff to answer. Each webcast, including the question and answer session, is expected to last around one hour. Details of the webcasts:
  • Webcast Topic: Project to comprehensively review IAS 39 – Expected loss impairment model
  • Date and Time - First Webcast: Friday 3 July 2009 10:00am (London time)
  • Date and Time - Second Webcast: Monday 6 July 2009 3:00pm (London time)
  • Presenters: Sue Lloyd, Senior Technical Consultant and Martin Friedhoff, Project Manager
  • More Information and Registration
  • Project Page on IASB Website
  • Project Page on IAS Plus

 

We have updated our IASB agenda project timetable

30 Jun 2009

We have updated our IASB Agenda Project Summary and Timetable to reflect the IASB's decisions on its work plan and other public announcements of its project plans.

The timetable calls for publication by the IASB of 18 consultation documents and 28 final pronouncements between now and the end of 2011, as follows:
  • 3 discussion papers
  • 15 exposure drafts
  • 25 final IFRSs
  • 1 final guidance document
  • 2 final Conceptual Framework chapters

Click for IASB's Work Plan for IFRSs (IASB website).

 

Commissioner McCreevy comments on accounting and financial crisis

29 Jun 2009

Charlie McCreevy, the EU Commissioner for Internal Market and Services, spoke on issues relating to the economic and financial crisis before the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland in Dublin on 26 June 2009.

Click to Download Mr McCreevy's Remarks PDF 45k). His comments on accounting included the following:

As you all know, the role of accounting rules has become the subject of heated debate. But we remain convinced that the international standard-setting system is the best way forward. And this is not solely an EU view. It is also the view of the G-20. Accounting rules did not cause the crisis but it is fair to ask did they amplify it? We need to look at what has happened and see if the rules need to be adjusted so as to strengthen financial stability. I am pleased that at last the IASB plans to complete its fundamental revision of IAS 39 by the end of this year. This is an ambitious agenda for such a complex standard. I know there are many financial institutions in the EU who will want to have the revision of the impairment rules in place for the year end accounts. ECOFIN ministers have conveyed their intentions in this regard.

Agenda for 9 July 2009 IFRIC meeting

29 Jun 2009

The International Financial Reporting Interpretations Committee (IFRIC) will meet at the IASB's offices in London on Thursday 9 July 2009 (one day only) 10:00am to 16:30pm.

The meeting is open to the public and will be webcast. The tentative agenda is shown below.

Agenda for the IFRIC MeetingThursday, 9 July 2009

 

  • Introduction
  • Review of Tentative Agenda Decisions published in May IFRIC Update
    • IFRS 3 Business Combinations – Acquisition-related costs in a business combination
    • IFRS 3 Business Combinations – Earlier application of revised IFRS 3
    • IAS 7 Statement of Cash Flows – Determination of cash equivalents
    • IAS 27 Consolidated and Separate Financial Statements – Transaction costs for non-controlling interests
    • IAS 28 Investments in Associates – Potential effect of IFRS 3 (as revised in 2008) and IAS 27 (as amended in 2008) on equity method accounting
    • IAS 28 Investments in Associates – Venture capital consolidations and partial use of fair value through profit or loss
    • IAS 28 Investments in Associates – Impairment of investments in associates
    • IAS 39 Financial Instruments: Recognition and Measurement – Hedging using more than one derivative as the hedging instrument
    • IAS 39 Financial Instruments: Recognition and Measurement – Meaning of 'significant or prolonged'
    • IFRIC 12 Service Concession Arrangements – Scope of IFRIC 12
  • Review of Tentative Agenda Decisions published in March IFRIC Update
    • IFRIC 18 Transfers of Assets from Customers – Applicability to the customer
    • IAS 34 Interim Financial Reporting – Interim fair value disclosures
    • IAS 38 Intangible Assets – Compliance costs for REACH
  • Staff Recommendations for Tentative Agenda Decisions
    • IFRS 2 Share based payment – Non-vesting condition or non-market based vesting condition when condition is not within the control of the entity or employee
    • IFRS 3 Business Combinations – Measurement of NCI
    • IFRS 3 Business Combinations – Un-replaced and voluntary replaced share-based payment awards
    • IFRS 5 Non-current Assets Held for Sale and Discontinued Operations – Writedown of a disposal group
    • IAS 23 Borrowing Costs – Meaning of 'general borrowings'
    • IAS 32 Financial Instruments: Presentation – Debt to equity swap
  • Administrative Session – IFRIC work in progress

 

 

FASB Chairman Herz speaks to National Press Club

28 Jun 2009

US FASB Chairman Robert H Herz spoke before the National Press Club in Washington on 26 June 2009. His presentation was titled History Doesn't Repeat Itself, People Repeat History – Front-Line Thoughts and Observations on Creating a Sounder Financial System.

Among the points he made:
  • Accounting and the financial crisis. "One very welcome development arising from the financial crisis is that a much broader constituency is calling for greater transparency as a necessary ingredient for recovery and the rebuilding of investor and public confidence. Included in this has been the need to improve and strengthen certain accounting and reporting standards. While accounting did not cause the crisis and accounting will not end it, it did reveal a number of areas requiring improvement in standards and overall transparency."
  • Politicisation of accounting standards setting. "Unfortunately, there have been certain major companies – including ones that subsequently failed and had to be rescued by the government – and industry trade groups that have sought political intervention into accounting standard setting. While that is their right, and while we certainly welcome active dialogue with lawmakers, politicisation of accounting standard setting by special interests risks undermining public confidence in the integrity of financial reporting. The investing public expects and deserves unbiased and transparent financial information that is not skewed to favor particular transactions, companies or industries."
  • Transparency. "Transparency is not just a buzz word or a cliché. It is a fundamental and absolutely essential attribute of sound financial markets. Relevant, trustworthy, and timely information is the oxygen of financial markets. Depriving markets of such information – or polluting the information – can have very adverse consequences."
  • Regulatory reform. "Some of the most difficult accounting and reporting issues emanating from the financial crisis stem, at least in part, from the lack of proper regulation and risk management, unsound lending and securitisation practices, and the absence of proper market infrastructures around the 'dark markets' for structured credit products and derivatives."
  • Capital markets reporting versus prudential regulatory reporting. "Our focus as accounting standard setters is on the communication of relevant, transparent, and unbiased financial information on corporate performance and financial condition to investors and the capital markets. That information is aimed at facilitating informed investment decisions and is essential to effective allocation of capital across the economy. The transparency provided by external financial reports also contributes to financial stability by reducing the level of uncertainty in the system. On the other hand, the very important focus of bank regulators is on the safety and soundness of individual financial institutions, protection of customer deposits, and on the overall stability of the financial system. Given our different missions and focus, it is not surprising that we would sometimes have different perspectives on particular accounting and reporting matters affecting financial institutions."
  • Global accounting standards. "Recognising the potential benefits that could result from having a single set of high-quality accounting standards across the global capital markets, we have devoted substantial time and effort in recent years to working with the International Accounting Standards Board on jointly improving and converging our respective standards through developing common standards in major areas and eliminating differences between our standards. At the same time, we also strive to take care of business at home by responding on a timely basis to reporting issues in our system. Riding these two horses is not always easy and sometimes requires timely actions in terms of improving US GAAP in an area while also working on longer term global solutions with the IASB in the same area."

Click to Download Presentation.

Consolidation and derecognition roundtables

28 Jun 2009

The IASB is holding a series of roundtable discussions with constituents focusing on its recent proposals in ED 10 Consolidation and ED/2009/3 Derecognition.

Roundtables have been held in North America and Asia. The European roundtables were held in London on 15 and 16 June 2009, in conjunction with the regular meeting of the IASB. Presented below are the preliminary and unofficial notes taken by Deloitte observers at the roundtables.

 

Notes from the Consolidation and Derecognition Roundtables -- 15 and 16 June 2009, London

Monday 15 June 2009 – Derecognition

Participants expressed a preference for the approach put forward in the Alternative View to the Exposure Draft rather than the preferred approach that was described by the ED, with most participants raising concerns about the consequences of adopting the preferred approach. In particular, several participants proposed a more explicit risk and rewards filter in the process of derecognition as they felt that underlying risk and rewards exposures may be otherwise lost.

Alternative approach supported by five IASB Board Members, as described in the exposure draft

Under the alternative approach, when the rights to identified cash flows are transferred, the transferor derecognises the previously recognised asset and recognises all the rights and obligations either retained or obtained in the transfer transaction. For example, forward contracts, puts, calls, guarantees or disproportionate involvement with respect to transferred cash flows would not result in failed sales or result in the recognition of a liability for the proceeds received. Any involvement would be recognised and measured at the date of transfer at fair value. The objective would be to recognise any rights and obligations associated with a transferred asset as if those rights and obligations related to an asset that had not previously been owned.

Under the alternative approach, a transferor could be required to apply the same disclosure guidance as proposed by the amendment to IFRS 7. The proposed amendment to IFRS 7 would provide adequate information to enable users to evaluate the nature of and risks associated with the transferor's continuing involvement in derecognised financial assets. The full exposure (including the nature, timing, ranking, amount and uncertainty of any obligations or cash outflows relating to the entity's continuing involvement in a transferred asset and the details about those assets) would be provided in one note (disclosure). Hence, the proposed disclosures would provide clear information both on the allocation of risks and on their potential impact on the financial condition of the transferor.

One participant expressed his concern that in the current period of economic crisis the Board had opted for an approach that could lead to more derecognition of financial instruments when the market is expected the opposite development. Some participants suggested that recognition criteria that incorporated the overall risk exposure on the balance sheet rather than disclosing it in the notes would be preferable for users of the financial statements. Concern was also expressed about the different criteria for transferors and transferees in the ED and how those could be reconciled.

The discussion continued regarding the continuing involvement filter in the derecognition criteria. Several ideas were floated; one participant seemed to object to the introduction of a model that has inherent exceptions built in itself (that is, call options). Participants also notified that a kind of de minimis threshold for continuing involvement would be needed in order to avoid practical issues on application.

The panel continued with the discussion on the practical ability test for derecognition of financial instruments. Most participants agreed with the thrust of the proposal, nonetheless, most raised the practical issues. In particular concerns were raised that different parties can interpret the criteria in a different way depending to whom the transfer is being made and that how would be derecognition applied in case further transfer is regulatory restricted. Moreover, as one participant pointed out, there is a potential inconsistency with ED 10 as you may have come to a conclusion that no consolidation is required but in the same time to fail the derecognition test.

Much attention in the discussion was paid to the alternative model which was included in the ED. Many participants thought that it would provide a better reflections of economic reality, but on the other hand felt that the alternative approach had not been developed sufficiently in the ED to enable them to endorse it. One participant expressed his concerns that the alternative model, albeit being more conceptually pure, will be even less understandable to the users of financial statements. Particular concerns were raised in relation to recording a gain on derecognition when only a part of and instrument is being derecognised without changing the nature of it.

Overall, many participants raised concerns about the speed of the project as well as perceived lack of coordination with FASB, that could lead to further lack of convergence with US GAAP. The staff noted that the speed of the project is determined by the current economic environment and in particular demands from governments and regulators. The staff noted the risk that unless quick solution is found regulators may impose their own rules.

Many participants expressed concerns about the proposed disclosures. There was general agreement that a new framework for disclosures was needed: one that would make them more principle-based as opposed to the current practices, under which they are treated as a mandatory checklist containing both minimum and maximum disclosure requirements. In particular, the potential usefulness of the disclosures to some entities was questioned. Participants thought that in some instances disclosures of financial instruments derecognised (or not recognised on the balance sheet in the first place) could be more useful than detailed disclosures of derecognitions that failed the proposed criteria.

Click for Consolidation and Derecognition project pages.

IASCF Trustees and Monitoring Board will meet

28 Jun 2009

The Trustees of the IASC Foundation, under which the IASB operates, will meet on 6-8 July 2009 at the Intercontinental Amstel Hotel in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

The meeting on 6 July 2009 is with the IASCF Monitoring Board and is open to public observation. The Trustees meeting on 7 July 2009 is also open to public observation. Presented below is the agenda for the public portion of the meeting.

iascfagenda.gif

Monday 6 July 2009 - Meeting with the Monitoring Board (14:30-18:00h)

  • Introduction and opening remarks
  • IASB's response to the financial crisis
  • Second part of the IASC Foundation Constitution Review and other governance matters
  • IASC Foundation financing arrangements
  • Regulatory update on IFRS adoption and IFRS related issues
Tuesday 7 July 2009 (10:45-18:00h)
  • Introduction and opening remarks
  • IASB's response to the financial crisis
  • Review of IASB's work programme
  • Constitution Review, Part II
  • Report of the Due Process Oversight Committee
  • Report of the SAC Chairman
  • Review of financial requirements and funding update

 

 

IAS Plus Newsletter on proposed amendments to IFRIC 14

26 Jun 2009

On 28 May 2009, the IASB published an exposure draft of proposed amendments to IFRIC 14 'IAS 19 – The Limit on a Defined Benefit Asset, Minimum Funding Requirements and their Interaction'.

The proposed amendments are aimed at correcting an unintended consequence of IFRIC 14, which is that technically, in some circumstances, entities are not permitted to recognise as an asset some prepayments for minimum funding contributions.

The ED proposes to correct the problem. Comments on the ED are due 27 July 2009. Deloitte's IFRS Global Office has published an IAS Plus Update Newsletter Explaining the Proposed Amendments to IFRIC 14 (PDF 73k). Past issues of all IAS Plus newsletters are Here.

 

PCAOB will defer inspections of some non-US audit firms

26 Jun 2009

The US Public Company Accounting Oversight Board has adopted an amendment to a rule on the timing of certain inspections of registered non-US public accounting firms.

The amendment gives the Board the ability to postpone, for up to three years, the first inspection of any foreign registered public accounting firm that the Board is otherwise required to conduct before the end of 2009 and that is in a jurisdiction in which the Board has not conducted an inspection prior to 2009. The delay gives the PCAOB the ability to conduct these inspections cooperatively with the Board's non-US counterparts. Click for PCAOB Press Release (PDF 39k). The text of the amended rule is available On the PCAOB's Website.

 

IASB invites comments on expected loss model

25 Jun 2009

The IASB has published a Request for Information on the feasibility of using an expected loss model for the impairment of financial assets.

Impairment is one of the issues that the IASB is addressing in the second phase of its Comprehensive Review of IAS 39.
  • Incurred loss model. The current model in IAS 39 requires an entity to account for credit losses in financial assets only if an event (or a combination of events) has occurred that has a negative effect on future cash flows and that effect can be reliably estimated (this is known as the incurred loss model). A feature of that model is that an entity is not permitted to consider the effects of future expected losses. The financial crisis has highlighted this as an area of concern.
  • Expected loss model. At the request of the G20 leaders and others, the IASB is examining the expected loss model as an alternative. The expected loss model requires an entity to make an ongoing assessment of expected credit losses, which may require earlier recognition of credit losses. Proponents argue that this would better reflect the way that financial assets are priced and the way some companies manage their business.
The IASB invites responses to its Request for Information by 1 September 2009. Click for:

 

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