"Beyond the GAAP" Newsletter
Beyond the GAAP no.130 – February 2019
News from the IASB continues to be dominated by work to amend IFRS 17, to which we return in this edition’s special study. This project even seems to overshadow progress on other issues, such as the presentation of financial statements, or the finalisation (with no changes to the standards) of work on segment reporting and interest rates. The fact remains that the latest news from the March IASB meeting suggests that there is no appetite, on the IASB’s part, for change on the thorniest aspect of IFRS 17, the level of contract aggregation.
Beyond the GAAP no.129 – January 2019
With annual report season in full swing, this issue of Beyond the GAAP is a slightly quicker read than last month’s issue. However, it does contain some particularly significant news, notably a number of interesting agenda decisions published by the IFRS Interpretations Committee.
Beyond the GAAP no.128 – December 2018
Following on from last issue’s feature, which provided a general overview of standards applicable at 31 December 2018, Beyond the GAAP details, in special studies, two issues that may impact your financial statements either immediately with the first study on how to account for hyperinflation in Argentina, or more prospectively with the IASB’s latest proposals on the costs to be taken into account to determine whether a contract is onerous.
Beyond the GAAP no. 127 - November 2018
Ahead of the preparation of financial statements at 31 December 2018, Beyond the GAAP summarises the standards applicable to the current year and revisits the information published by European entities on the introduction of IFRS 16 at 30 June 2018 - information which must be significantly expanded in December 2018.
Beyond the GAAP no.126 - October 2018
During October, the European legislators have endorsed interpretation IFRIC 23 – Uncertainty over Income Tax Treatments. Meanwhile, the IASB has published new short, but focused, documents.
Beyond the GAAP no.125 - September 2018
As the IASB is asked to re-examine some aspects of IFRS 17, we enter a period of uncertainty as regards both EFRAG’s work on the endorsement advice and the likely effective date of the standard. This also has implications for the deferral of IFRS 9, an alternative which many European bancassurers and insurance companies opted for. Meanwhile, the IFRS IC has published four agenda discussions; in this issue, we discuss the two relating to capitalisation of borrowing costs.
Beyond the GAAP no.124 - July/August 2018
This issue of Beyond the GAAP brings a piece of good news for our readers, as we all return to work following a well-deserved break: our financial instruments experts have saved you some effort by reading and summarising the IASB’s particularly dense Discussion Paper on the classification of financial instruments as liabilities or equity, published at the beginning of the summer. See our ‘A Closer Look’ feature for our summary of the DP.
Beyond the GAAP no.123 - June 2018
After focusing on half-yearly reporting and on IFRS 15 and IFRS 9 in our last edition, this month’s special study presents a Benchmark on disclosures by entities at 31 December 2017 on the future impact of IFRS 16. The level of information provided varies greatly, and, unsurprisingly, is on average rather limited. It is as well to remember that entities should expand these disclosures at 30 June 2018.
Beyond the GAAP no.122 - May 2018
Target: the half-year accounts! With the disclosures required by the two standards that came into force on 1 January 2018 and the full list of applicable texts, three ‘A Closer look’ studies will support you in their preparation.
Beyond the GAAP no.121 - April 2018
Again this month IFRS 9 and IFRS 15 take centre stage in our highlights as they are the focus of attention for market regulators and the Monitoring Board of the IFRS Foundation.
Beyond the GAAP no.120 - March 2018
The year began quietly with few major developments relating to standards, but March has seen a whole series of projects coming to fruition. Some of these are highly concrete, with three very detailed decisions published by the IFRS IC on the application of IFRS 15, which we explore in our ‘A Closer Look’ feature. Others are much more conceptual, such as the publication of the IFRS Conceptual Framework, and still others are forward-looking and are prompted by the European Union’s action plans on sustainable development and the fitness of public reporting by companies.
Beyond the GAAP no.119 - February 2018
With less than a year to go before the effective date of IFRS 16 on Leases, the report of the ANC’s (The French accounting standards setter) decisions on the duration of 3/6/9 leases, published in February, is certainly the most anticipated announcement for French entities. This is because it should enable most of them to resolve this thorny question in their plans for implementation. This decision will of course also be useful to entities with subsidiaries in France.
Beyond the GAAP no.118 - January 2018
Since 1 January 2018, IFRS 9 - Financial instruments and IFRS 15 - Revenue from Contracts with Customers have been effective, as the the IASB headline announced on its website on 8 January. In parallel, work to assess the impact of IFRS 9 on long-term investment is continuing at the European level, with the publication of the outcomes of a first factual analysis by EFRAG. This research has also acted as a spur to the IASB, which has followed up the EFRAG publication by issuing two presentations of its own on the contributions of IFRS standards to financial stability and long-term investment.
Beyond the GAAP no.117 - December 2017
2017 ended fairly quietly, since the European Commission had already endorsed several texts in November and the IASB’s December meeting decided to postpone publication of most of its texts and draft texts, with the exception of the annual improvements to IFRSs, which we discuss in this month’s ‘A closer look’ study. This being the case, the implementation of IFRS 9 and IFRS 15 in January 2018 will be more than enough to keep entities and their auditors busy, on top of the preparation of the 2017 financial statements.
Beyond the GAAP no.116 - November 2017
Over the past decade, the IASB has been working on the process of converging IFRS with US GAAP, and this month saw EU endorsement of the remaining resulting standards. With implementation now set to go ahead, this marks the end of a chapter. The one remaining major standard awaiting endorsement – namely IFRS 17 - Insurance Contracts – was not a joint project with the FASB, and moreover is not scheduled for endorsement until the end of next year.
Beyond the GAAP no.115 - October 2017
The IASB has put some last-minute finishing touches to IFRS 9, with an amendment on debt instruments with symmetric prepayment options and with the inclusion (in the Basis for Conclusions) of its analysis of the standard’s provisions on the modification of financial liabilities. All that remains is for the European Union to accelerate the endorsement of the amendment so that European entities do not have to switch accounting policies between 2018 and 2019!
Beyond the GAAP no.114 - September 2017
After a quiet summer on the accounting front, September started brightly with two exposure drafts and a Practice Statement from the IASB.
Beyond the GAAP no.113 - July August 2017
July was a busier period for Europe than for the IASB. The European Commission sent two draft texts (deferred application of IFRS 9 for insurers and financial conglomerates, and IFRS 16 on Leases) to the European Parliament and Council for endorsement before the end of the year, while ESMA published three documents on financial information and its enforcement activities.
Beyond the GAAP no.112 - June 2017
June 2017 saw the publication of IFRIC 23 – Uncertainty over Income Tax Treatments. According to this Interpretation, entities must now assume that any uncertainty over income tax treatments will be examined by the taxation authorities, and must consider the probable outcome of such examination when determining the amount of income tax to be recognised in the financial statements.
Beyond the GAAP no.111 - May 2017
IFRS 17 – Insurance Contracts has been in the pipeline for more than ten years, and finally made its appearance during the night of 16 to 17 May 2017. On 17 May, the IASB hosted two interactive webinars on the standard, and launched a dedicated webpage to support implementation. IFRS 17 will replace the interim standard IFRS 4 from 2021, meaning insurers will no longer be able to use local accounting frameworks for insurance contracts. The new standard is therefore likely to cause substantial upheaval, with impacts varying significantly from one company to another.