FASB on Wednesday issued an Accounting Standards Update (ASU) that it said should end a “diversity in practice” in the disclosure of pro forma revenue and earnings for business combinations. The ASU says that, if comparative financial statements are presented, the pro forma revenue and earnings of the combined entity for the comparable prior reporting period should be reported as though the acquisition date for all business combinations that occurred during the current year had been as of the beginning of the comparable prior annual reporting period.
The amendments are contained ASU 2010-29 , Business Combinations (Topic 805), Disclosure of Supplementary Pro Forma Information for Business Combinations—a consensus of the FASB Emerging Issues Task Force.
FASB Accounting Standards Codification paragraph 805-10-50-2(h) requires a public entity to disclose pro forma information for business combinations that occurred in the current reporting period, according to ASU 2010-29. The disclosures include pro forma revenue and earnings of the combined entity for the current reporting period as though the acquisition date for all business combinations that occurred during the year had been as of the beginning of the annual reporting period.
In practice, the ASU says, some preparers have presented the pro forma information in their comparative financial statements as if the business combination that occurred in the current reporting period had occurred as of the beginning of each of the current and prior annual reporting periods. Other preparers have disclosed the pro forma information as if the business combination occurred at the beginning of the prior annual reporting period only, and carried forward the related adjustments, if applicable, through the current reporting period.
FASB said the amendments improve the usefulness of the pro forma revenue and earnings disclosures by requiring a description of the nature and amount of material, nonrecurring pro forma adjustments that are directly attributable to business combinations.
The amendments are effective prospectively for business combinations for which the acquisition date is on or after the beginning of the first annual reporting period beginning on or after Dec. 15, 2010. Early adoption is permitted.