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Research project on discount rates – review of existing requirements

Date recorded:

The project manager informed the Board members that the research project was looking into whether there might be a financial reporting issue with respect to discount rates. She said that IFRSs required different discount rates in different standards. On the 2011 agenda consultation, the Board had received 47 comment letters that had discussed a potential project on discount rates. She said that the paper included the objective and the scope of the research project. She asked the Board to consider specifically the measurement objective, the components of discount rates, measurement methodology, disclosure requirements and definitions and terms. She said that the staff was looking to providing a research paper by the end of the year and asked the Board members whether they had any questions.

One Board member said that she thought that inventorying was the right approach to the issue. She also said that it should be examined whether wording and application with regard to discount rates were consistent throughout the standards. The project manager replied that they were striving for consistent application eventually but the first step of the project was only to take inventory.

A fellow Board member said that the time value of money definition had been considered very thoroughly during the deliberations of IFRS 9 and she hoped that the research paper would not challenge this definition. The project manager replied that current projects like Financial Instruments or Insurance Contracts would be considered when drafting the research paper.

One Board member asked whether the paper would have any justifications for differences in discount rates throughout IFRSs. The project manager replied that this would be covered when looking at measurement objectives.

Another Board member suggested that staff should not only look at regulatory documents but also contact ESMA and IOSCO as they performed many reviews that did not lead to publications.

One Board member said that he did not think that a stand-alone standard on discount rates would be required. The project manager said that it was very likely that this would not be the case.

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