Legislative / Regulatory

GAAP a goner?

Are accounting standards on the verge of going global?

There's been a lot of talk lately of converging U.S. and international standards, but now the SEC is joining the fray. At a March 6 meeting, regulators explored the possibility of accepting financial statements prepared using International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) instead of U.S generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP).

"Convergence between IFRS and GAAP has been a long-term goal of accounting standard setters," writes CFO.com's Sarah Johnson. "... But as the use of IFRS increases, U.S. companies hoping to stay competitive with foreign issuers may also want to use the international standard."

Indeed, no less an authority than former SEC accounting chief Donald Nicolaisen "wants the SEC to require U.S. companies to abandon GAAP in favor of another set of accounting guidelines, possibly international ones," Johnson writes.

International independence standards: Be heard
Meanwhile, the AICPA is urging CPAs to comment on proposed changes to international auditor independence standards. Find out why input from United States CPAs is considered vital by reading the AICPA's summary of the proposal. The deadline for submitting comments is April 30, 2007.


Bill Sheridan