The blue-ribbon panel established to provide recommendations on the future of U.S. accounting standards for private companies will hold its second meeting Friday at the offices of the Financial Accounting Foundation, FASB’s parent organization, in Norwalk, Conn.
The public portion of the meeting will take place from 9:10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will be accessible via live audio stream found here .
The first half of the meeting will be a continuation of the panel’s April 12 meeting discussing U.S. standard setting for private companies. Panel members will hear testimony from users of private company financial statements as well as remarks from preparers and practitioners.
The panel will discuss the topic, “Is U.S. GAAP meeting private company user needs in a cost-beneficial manner for both users and preparers.”
The meeting also will be devoted to the topic of alternatives seen in other countries. It will include the following:
- An overview of the topic by Joel Osnoss, partner of Global IFRS and Offering Services, at Deloitte.
- A presentation about Canadian GAAP for Private Enterprises by Greg Edwards, principal of the Accounting Standards Board (AcSB) of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants, and Tricia O’Malley, chair of the AcSB.
- A presentation about the proposal for private companies in the United Kingdom by Ian Mackintosh, chair of the UK Accounting Standards Board, via videoconference.
- A presentation about IFRS for SMEs by Tom Jones, former member and vice chairman of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and Paul Pacter (via videoconference), IASB board member (designate).
After hearing these presentations the panel will discuss the following two questions: “How does standard setting for private companies in the U.S. compare to standard setting in other countries, both those that have adopted IFRS for SMEs and those that have not”; and “To the extent that current U.S. GAAP is not meeting user needs in a cost-beneficial manner, what can we learn from the alternatives seen in other countries?”
In December, the AICPA and FAF announced the panel’s creation . The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy also sponsors the panel.
The 18 panel members , including AICPA President and CEO Barry Melancon, and participating observers represent a cross section of financial reporting constituencies, including lenders, investors and owners, as well as preparers, auditors and regulators. It is chaired by Rick Anderson, CEO of Moss Adams LLP. (Click here to read an interview with Anderson.)
During the AICPA 2009 fall Council meeting, the Institute released a survey showing that a vast majority of Council members support U.S. GAAP differences, where appropriate, for U.S. private companies. The panel will be one of the Institute’s top priorities in 2010, and recommendations are likely to come this year, Melancon said.
Additionally, in December, the Private Company Financial Reporting Committee—an advisory group tasked with communicating recommendations to FASB about differences in accounting standards related to private companies based on user needs and cost/benefit considerations—said it “believes that a separate, stand-alone set of accounting standards for U.S. private companies tailored to the needs of the users of those statements is the preferred approach.”
Over several decades, other groups have wrestled with questions about accounting standards for U.S. private companies, but much of that work has focused on technical issues. Melancon has said the blue-ribbon panel is unique and holds greater potential for significant movement than any previous effort.
The panel’s third meeting will take place July 19 in Chicago. The exact location has not yet been determined.