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US_SEC Image

Foreign private issuers that prepare their financial statements in accordance with IFRS may begin submitting those reports to the SEC in XBRL

Mar 01, 2017

On March 1, 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published a taxonomy on its website so that foreign private issuers that prepare their financial statements in accordance with IFRS may submit those reports using XBRL. XBRL is a machine readable data format that allows investors and other data users to more easily access, analyze and compare financial information across reporting periods and across companies.

Foreign private issuers that prepare their financial statements in accordance with IFRS as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board may begin immediately to submit their financial statements in XBRL. Otherwise, all such foreign private issuers must submit their financial statements in XBRL for fiscal periods ending on or after December 15, 2017.

Review the press release and the notice on the SEC's website.

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SEC proposes to green light iXBRL

Mar 01, 2017

On March 1, 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) voted to propose amendments intended to improve the quality and accessibility of data submitted by public companies and mutual funds using XBRL. The proposals would require the use of Inline XBRL (iXBRL), which has the potential to benefit investors and other market participants while decreasing, over time, the cost of preparing information for submission to the SEC.

The recommendations are part of the SEC’s disclosure modernization initiative. iXBRL combines human readable HTML and machine readable XBRL in a single report. If adopted, it means that it will be easier to access and easier to understand, consume and analyse quarterly and annual financial statements in the United States. It will also mean the end of “dual filing” that has existed since 2009, in which a plain, unstructured HTML version of the disclosure was filed at (more or less) the same time as a structured XBRL version was submitted. And it means that the SEC in the US joins other major securities regulators including the JFSA in Japan, and ESMA, which governs disclosure regulation across Europe, in moving to use iXBRL to make fundamental data more suitable for the digital age.

The SEC also announced on March 1, 2017, that Foreign Private Issuers” (FPIs) can now use the IFRS taxonomy to file their financial statements in XBRL or Inline XBRL format. International businesses affected by this new ruling are advised to speak to their software vendor, filing agent or professional advisers about filing in iXBRL rather than XBRL so that they don’t have to switch again later.

Review the press release on the SEC's website.


IASB issues podcast on latest Board developments

Feb 28, 2017

On February 28, 2017, the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) released a podcast featuring its Chair, Hans Hoogervorst and Vice-Chair, Sue Lloyd discussing the deliberations at the February 2017 IASB meeting.

In addition, the podcast features (1) updates on the recent meeting between the IASB, IFRS Foundation Trustees, and the IFRS Foundation Monitoring Board, (2) feedback on the proposed changes to the definition of a business consultation, (3) discussion on rate-regulated activities, (4) symmetric prepayment options comment period, and (5) sweep issues discussion on the new insurance contracts.

Review the press release on the IASB's website.


Updated IASB work plan

Feb 27, 2017

On February 27, 2017, the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) updated its work plan following its February 2017 meeting.

Below is an analysis of all changes made to the work plan since the last update in January 2017.

Stan­dard-set­ting and related projects

  • Insurance contracts — the expected issuance of the IFRS is now marked as being expected within the next three months (May).

Nar­row-scope amend­ments

IFRS Taxonomy

  • Taxonomy update on insurance contracts — The expected issuance is now marked as being expected within the next three months (May).
  • Common practice (agriculture, leisure, franchises, retail and financial institutions) — This project has completed its public consultation phase and is now in the drafting phase.

The revised IASB work plan is available on the IASB's website.

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Report of the IFRS Foundation Trustees February 2017 meeting

Feb 27, 2017

On February 27, 2017, the report of the IFRS Foundation Trustees meeting held in Paris on February 1–2, 2017 was released.

Meeting ac­tiv­i­ties included the following:

  • Executive session — The Trustees discussed a number of important strategic issues:
    • Strategic workplan 2017 — The Trustees discussed the four primary strategic goals of the workplan.
    • Maintenance of IFRS The Trustees received a presentation on the approach to the interpretations process.
    • Foundation’s location — The Trustees agreed that the Foundation should stay in London in the medium-term, but will reassess its location over time.
    • Presentation on the work of the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) — The Trustees noted that the IIRC will like to establish a closer relationship with the IASB.
    • Other issues — The Trustees discussed its self-assessment and were updated on the Asia Oceania office’s work on long-term investment and the effect of accounting information on investment decision-making. The Trustees also discussed the timetable for the 2016 Audited Financial statements.
    • Committee reports — The Trustees discussed reports from the Audit and Finance Committee, the Education and Content Services Committee, the Human Capital Committee, and the Nom­i­nat­ing Committee.
  • IASB Chairman’s report — The Chair of the IASB provided the Trustees with an update on a number of the IASB’s technical ac­tiv­i­ties, agenda con­sul­ta­tion, engagement strategy, and implementation activities.
  • Meeting with the Monitoring Board — The Trustees discussed the Foundation’s strategy, due process, and governance.
  • Events in Paris — The Association Francaise des Enterprises Privees hosted a stake­holder event with the Trustees, which included the final Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa lecture.

The full report on the IFRS Foun­da­tion trustees’ meeting is available on the IASB’s website.

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Canadian securities regulators introduce innovative initiatives and increase collaboration to deter market misconduct

Feb 27, 2017

On February 27, 2017, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) released its 2016 Enforcement Report. The ninth annual report highlights actions taken across Canada to deter and sanction wrongdoing in the capital markets.

The CSA’s 2016 Enforcement Report highlights the enforcement actions taken by CSA members against those who breach Canada’s securities laws.

Some highlights from the 2016 Enforcement Report:

  • 39 years of jail time ordered for those committing securities-related misconduct.
  • $299 million in compensation that respondents undertook to return to investors through no-contest settlements and $51 million in restitution and disgorgement orders.
  • 120 people and 82 companies placed under interim and asset freeze orders, preventing further harm to investors.

Review the press release and report on the CSA's website.

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While direct IPSAS and IFRS adoption remains low, most OECD country governments have adopted accrual accounting

Feb 24, 2017

On February 24, 2017, a new study was released by the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), where they found that nearly three-quarters of OECD countries have adopted accrual accounting for their year-end financial reports. In 2003, only a quarter of the governments used accrual accounting.

The study was conducted from November 2015 to June 2016 among all of the (then) 34 OECD countries. Of those 34 countries, 25 countries (73%) base their annual financial reports on accrual accounting, and another three countries (9%) are currently transitioning to accrual accounting. Only six countries still use cash accounting.

The study also points out that while the direct adoption of international accounting standards, such as International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS) or International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), by national governments remains very low, almost 40% of the standard-setters use IPSAS (28%) or IFRS (9%) as primary or explicit references for developing their national standards.

The study 130 page study offers a short executive summary, a 15 page analysis of practices across all countries, and afterwards a detailed analysis of each country's accounting practice.

Review the study Accrual Practices and Reform Experiences in OECD Countries on the IFAC's website.

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CPAB 2016 Audit Quality Indicators Pilot Project – Interim Report

Feb 23, 2017

On February 23, 2017, the Canadian Public Accountability Board (CPAB) released an Interim Report which outlines its current findings regarding Audit Quality Indicators (AQIs) based on observations of participants in CPAB’s 2016 AQI Pilot Project.

The Interim Report summarizes the CPAB’s key learnings to date. Their observations suggest that AQIs could have significant potential to positively impact audit quality. They encourage audit committees, management and audit firms to continue to explore how AQIs can be integrated into their audit processes.

Re­view the Interim Report on the CPAB's web­site.

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Enhancing Audit Quality Anchors Two Year IAASB Work Plan

Feb 22, 2017

On February 22, 2017, the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) released its Work Plan for 2017–2018 following a public consultation with stakeholders.

The Work Plan for 2017-2018 is guided by the three underlying strategic objectives set in the five-year Strategy: (i) a continued focus on International Standards on Auditing (ISAs) as the basis for high-quality audits; (ii) the importance of the IAASB’s standards for other services to address emerging needs of stakeholders; and (iii) the board’s intention to strengthen collaboration with others to address public interest matters relevant to its work.

“The IAASB’s strategic objectives contribute to enhancing audit quality. The intent is for the audit standards and guidance being developed to further enhance that quality and to uphold the trust placed in audits and auditors,” noted Prof. Arnold Schilder, IAASB Chairman. “Respondents to the consultation stressed the importance of addressing key topics that contribute to high-quality audits in a changing business environment, influenced by technology, complexity, and demands for continued relevance of the audit.”

For further details, refer to the IAASB’s press release.

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FYI Article – Get Ready. The Insurance Contracts Standard Is Coming

Feb 21, 2017

On February 21, 2017, the Accounting Standards Board (AcSB) released an article describing the extensive due process steps it has undertaken to date on the complex Insurance Contract standard. The AcSB has taken an active role in influencing the development of IFRSs and in endorsing a standard before incorporating it into Canadian GAAP.

After years of outreach and deliberations, the Insurance Contracts standard is expected to be issued by the IASB this year. As a result, the AcSB will complete its due process prior to the standard becoming Canadian GAAP.

While some might assume the process is simple because our policy is to incorporate IFRSs as issued by the IASB into the CPA Canada Handbook –  Accounting, there are many steps that are taken to ensure that the standard meets the needs of our stakeholders. In fact, we spend over 40 per cent of our time influencing and adopting IFRSs.

Review the article on the AcSB's website.

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