Comment Letters Back Simplified Transition to Lease Standard

Companies, audit firms, and professional groups expressed approval of FASB’s proposed easing of the transition to its new lease accounting standard in comment letters. There was, however, less support for a second proposed amendment to the standard that called for relief when separating lease and non-lease pieces of a rental contract. Several businesses and audit firms, in comment letters to FASB, called on the board to either clarify the meaning of the proposed change or make the break easier to apply to more scenarios.


Limited Proposal for Pension Accounting Close to Release

The IASB is close to releasing the final version of a limited amendment for its pension standard that addresses how an entity accounts for a defined benefit plan when the plan is amended, curtailed, or settled during a reporting period. In September 2017, the board agreed to finalize the portion of the amendments dealing with IAS 19, Employee Benefits, while researching the likelihood that it can establish a more principles-based approach to amending IFRIC 14, IAS 19—The Limit on a Defined Benefit Asset, Minimum Funding Requirements, and Their Interaction. The board plans to continue discussing the amendments to IFRIC 14 at a future meeting to limit the effects the amendments will have on defined benefit plans, particularly in the United Kingdom. The amendments to IFRIC 14 say that plan sponsors who are entitled to refunds must take into account any legal requirements that will be triggered by the refund and a reduction of their contributions.


Comments Sought on Plan to Update Guidance for Revenues and Expenses

GASB is soliciting comments on an early-stage plan to develop more comprehensive guidance for a broader range of transactions. The board believes its plan will improve the ability of analysts, taxpayers, investors, and other interested parties to assess government financial statements and provide more useful information. GASB’s ultimate goal is to develop more comprehensive guidance for a broader range of transactions. “This invitation to comment lays out potential paths forward for establishing comprehensive guidance for revenue and expense transactions,” said David Vaudt, GASB chairman. Comments are due by April 27.