What’s next for FASB

By Ken Tysiac

FASB voted Wednesday to work on developing accounting rules to address areas of distinguishing liabilities and equity, financial performance reporting, and segment reporting.

After considering feedback on a yearlong agenda consultation project, FASB added these items to its technical agenda:

  • A project on distinguishing liabilities and equity that is designed to improve understandability and reduce complexity without sacrificing the relevance of information provided to financial statement users. The project will focus on indexation and settlement (within the context of the derivative scope exception), convertible debt, disclosures, and earnings per share.
  • A component of FASB’s financial performance reporting research project focused on the disaggregation of performance reporting by function and nature.
  • A narrow-scoped project on segment reporting intended to improve the aggregation criteria and segment disclosures.

In an effort to reassure company finance personnel who are implementing challenging standards for accounting for revenue recognition and leases, FASB Chairman Russell Golden said during a speech last month that some of the projects the board was considering would take a significant number of years to complete.

“Even then, depending on the extent of change, the effective date could likely be one to two years after completion,” Golden said.

Meanwhile, FASB voted to remove from its research agenda projects on:

  • Interest rate risk disclosures in accounting for financial instruments.
  • Pensions and other postretiree benefit plans.
  • A project on accounting for intangible assets.
  • The segment disclosure component of Phase 2 of the project on financial statements of not-for-profit entities.

FASB issued an invitation to comment on its agenda on Aug. 4, 2016. Wednesday’s decisions were made after considering the comments that were received.

Ken Tysiac (Kenneth.Tysiac@aicpa-cima.com) is a JofA editorial director.

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