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Financial Restatements Lowest in 15 Years

Audit Analytics is reporting the lowest total number of financial restatements among publicly traded companies since 2002. In its May report, Audit Analytics said restatements dropped 6.83 percent last year (671 companies). Separately, the percentage of financial restatements in 2016 was the lowest since 2007. Regulatory oversight is receiving partial credit for the low numbers. Audit Analytics Director of Research Don Whalen was not surprised by the downward trend, saying that improved internal controls over financial reporting have helped companies. Whalen noted the improved internal controls are due largely to the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board’s efforts and the Committee. Read More.

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FASB to Update Definitions for Key Accounting Concepts

At its May 3 meeting, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) voted to expand efforts to update its Conceptual Framework. The decision impacts potential updates to Concepts Statement (“CON”) No. 6, Elements of Financial Statements, which provides definitions for key financial reporting concepts like assets, liabilities, and revenues. Board members also agreed to preserve the goal of financial reporting as mentioned in CON No. 8, Conceptual Framework for Financial Reporting—Chapter 1, the Objective of General Purpose Financial Reporting. Viewed as the main characteristic of the Conceptual Framework, the chapter says that a financial reporting’s objective is to offer useful financial. Read More.

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Comment Letters Ask FASB to Limit Future Projects

Some trade groups want the Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) to provide more leeway for implementing current accounting standards before taking on new projects. In feedback to the FASB’s Invitation to Comment, Agenda Consultation, groups like the American Bankers Association (“ABA”) asked the board to consider the time and costs needed when new standards are implemented. The ABA also noted that standards involving revenue, leases, credit losses and financial instrument measurement and classification require significant undertaking that could last over several years. Other comment letters to the agenda consultation document came from the Institute of Management Accountants (“IMA”), which advised. Read More.

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FASB Seeks Feedback on Agenda Considerations

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) has released an Invitation to Comment regarding possible financial accounting and reporting topics to add to its agenda. The Invitation to Comment features potential issues and solutions on intangible assets, pensions and other post-retirement benefit plans, distinguishing liabilities from equity, and reporting performance and cash flows. In particular, the FASB is seeking feedback on whether improvement opportunities exist for the financial reporting issues raised in the Invitation to Comment, the priority and approach the board should take in addressing each issue, and if any other financial reporting areas not listed in the document should. Read More.

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FASB Recommends Financial Reporting Topics for Discussion Paper

At its board meeting earlier this month, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) reviewed its agenda Discussion Paper scheduled for release later this year. In particular, the FASB recommended the inclusion of the following financial reporting topics: Financial Performance Reporting (including the Performance Statement, Other Comprehensive Income, Cash Flow Statement, and Segment Reporting); Distinguishing Liabilities from Equity; Intangible Assets; and Pensions and Other Postretirement Employee Benefit Plans. Also at the meeting, the FASB decided not to add a project on the Simplifying the Measurement of Asset Retirement Obligations project and also removed Phase 2 of the Liabilities and Equity—Targeted Improvements. Read More.

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Highlights from GASB’s January Meeting

During a two-day meeting last month at its offices in Norwalk, Connecticut, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (“GASB”) discussed the following topics: Leases. The GASB tentatively decided that the Exposure Draft, Leases, should include governments with principal ongoing operations consisting of leasing assets to other entities. Such governments should be required to disclose upcoming lease payments that are part of the lease receivable, presenting principal and interest separately. Blending Requirements for Certain Component Units. After reviewing a preballot draft of a final Statement, Blending Requirements for Certain Component Units, the GASB made clarifying revisions on the draft document. Irrevocable Split-Interest. Read More.

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