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FASB chairman on IFRSs: “one size does not fit all”

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Aug 10, 2015

In the latest issue of the FASB’s quarterly e-newsletter, "FASB Outlook," Chairman Russ Golden discusses the importance of “comparable” global accounting standards while noting that the United States is “unlikely” to adopt IFRSs or give public companies the option of using IFRSs when filing financial statements with the SEC.

Mr. Golden goes on to state the following regarding the lack of U.S. support for mandating IFRSs:

Perhaps the most important driver of this development is the increased recognition among U.S. stakeholders that legal, regulatory, and cultural differences among and between jurisdictions are likely to result in at least some variation in the way that accounting standards are written, applied in practice and enforced. In short, it has become clear that one size does not fit all.

That said, we at the FASB continue to believe that global accounting standards should be as comparable as possible — and we remain fully committed to the long-term, aspirational goal of developing global accounting standards that have the fewest possible differences.

Mr. Golden cites accounting projects on which the FASB and IASB have converged their guidance (e.g., revenue recognition, business combinations) as examples of how standard setters should collaborate to produce “high-quality, compatible” accounting standards. He further stresses the importance of working with national standard setters, some of whom “continue to permit businesses to choose among a variety of approaches to accounting, including distinct national versions of generally accepted accounting principles.”  

Other features of the “FASB Outlook” newsletter include the following:

  • An update on the short-duration insurance contracts project.
  • In­for­ma­tion about how investor feedback affects accounting standards.
  • Two videos in which (1) FASB board member Marc Siegel dis­cusses the project on improving the effectiveness of disclosures in notes to financial statements and (2) FASB board members Daryl Buck and Hal Schroeder discuss their tenure on the board.
  • A look at up­com­ing guid­ance on em­ployee benefit plans, net benefit costs, and government assistance.

For more information, see the “FASB Outlook” newsletter on the FASB’s Web site.

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