It has become a cliché to say that accounting is the language of business. That metaphor is helpful because it emphasises that accounting conveys vital information about business. But the metaphor can be unhelpful because, although accounting is a system for conveying information, accounting lacks most features of real human languages, such as Arabic, Chinese,… Continue reading Accounting is not a language
When the IASB developed the 2018 version of its Conceptual Framework for Financial Statements (2018), it created a set of principles that it believed would provide a more coherent base for its future decisions on recognition. The post summarises how those principles differ from the recognition criteria contained in the previous (2010) version of the… Continue reading Recognition
When accounting standard-setters have to make decisions about recognition and measurement, they often face two competing claims: some people argue that investors will under-react if companies are forced to recognise something; but other people argue that investors will over-react if companies are forced to recognise that thing. Standard-setters would love to get evidence that would… Continue reading The hardest question in standard-setting?
Many companies will need to spend a lot of money reshaping their businesses to help save the planet. Some environmental campaigners say that companies should book all that spending as liabilities today. They argue that booking that spending today would make investors focus on that information and that investors would then put pressure on companies… Continue reading Putting the wrong kinds of numbers in P&L won’t help save the planet