Meeting with Healthcare Professionals to Address Issues, Trends

FASB is scheduled to meet with the Healthcare Financial Management Association’s Principles and Practices Board on April 27, plan to discuss financial reporting issues important to the health care sector. FASB also wants to hear the group’s feedback on several projects on the board’s agenda, including implementation of the board’s landmark revenue recognition standard, its financial performance reporting project, business combinations and collaborations, and its project on debt classification. In addition, FASB wants to hear about the accounting implications of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and the board’s project to simplify how companies account for cloud computing arrangements.


National Standards Setters Ask for Guidance on Digital Currencies

Accounting standards setters from Canada, New Zealand, and Australia called on the IASB on April 16 to shed light on the accounting for transactions in digital currencies such as Bitcoin. Speaking at a meeting of the IASB’s Accounting Standards Advisory Forum (ASAF), representatives from the standards setting bodies said they were fielding more questions about accounting for digital currencies and wanted the IASB to take action. Some members of the global advisory panel asked the IASB if digital currencies should be considered inventory, investments, or intangible assets. “It’s pretty much ‘pick your poison’ because there’s no clear guidance,” said Canadian Accounting Standards Board Chair Linda Mezon. “All of this, in our view, leads to the notion that the IASB could be helpful in doing something on a short-term basis to at least give stakeholders an idea where they could be looking.” Kris Peach, chair of the Australian Accounting Standards Board, also asked for clarity, saying most Australian accountants believed the IASB should either consider specific investment guidance for digital currency transactions or amend existing standards so digital currencies fall within their scope. IASB members made no commitment about how they would proceed.


Public Comments Sought on Five-Year Strategic Plan

The PCAOB released a survey to solicit public comments about the board’s priorities for the next five years (2018–2022). The board’s effort to take a fresh look at its overall mission and goals follows the SEC’s appointment of five all-new members. “The PCAOB has accomplished a great deal in the 15 years since it was established by Congress. With the appointment of five new board members, this is the right time to review that progress and identify what we are doing well and what we can do better,” chairman William Duhnke said in a statement. “We have a responsibility to make sure we are fulfilling our mandate and providing careful stewardship of our resources.” The deadline to complete the survey, which can be found on the PCAOB’s website, is May 15.