US Week in Review - Week ending 15 March 2012

    The US Week in Review highlights this week’s developments and emerging issues in the financial reporting world and gives you direct access to relevant technical accounting guidance and thought leadership produced by Ernst & Young.

    Certain materials referenced below are available exclusively in AccountingLink. The site is available free of charge, but requires a one-time registration.

    Ernst & Young publications

    To the Point: More work needed on revenue recognition

    In our comments to the FASB and the IASB on their latest revenue recognition proposal, we say the Boards have made significant progress addressing the concerns raised by constituents about their initial proposal. However, we believe the Boards need to reconsider some aspects of the proposal and consider providing additional implementation guidance to promote consistent application. Our To the Point publication summarizes the key points in our comment letter.

    Technical Line: Using the 2012 XBRL US GAAP taxonomy

    The 2012 version of the XBRL US GAAP taxonomy includes several thousand updates, and the SEC is expected to approve it for use at the end of March. The 2009 taxonomy is expected to be unavailable for use shortly thereafter. The SEC staff strongly encourages companies to adopt the latest version.

    Our Technical Line publication is designed to help companies make the transition. Using the 2012 taxonomy may be especially beneficial for accelerated and non-accelerated filers that will be required to begin detail tagging their financial statements later this year. The 2012 taxonomy also should help large accelerated filers that already detail tag their statements but have faced challenges doing so with the existing taxonomies.

    Accounting pronouncements effective for the first quarter of 2012

    Several new accounting pronouncements are effective for the first quarter of 2012 for calendar-year entities. We have listed those pronouncements in our publication, along with descriptions of related Ernst & Young resources. All entities should carefully evaluate which accounting requirements apply to them for the first time. All resource documents are available in AccountingLink.

    Standard Setter updates

    Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB)

    15 March 2012 EITF meeting

    Look for our upcoming EITF Update publication for highlights of the meeting.

    Upcoming meetings and webcasts

    16 March 2012 public roundtable meeting

    The FASB and the IASB are sponsoring roundtable meetings to discuss their proposals on investment companies and the FASB's proposal on investment property entities. For details, see the FASB site.

    21 March 2012 joint FASB-IASB videoconference meeting

    The Boards will discuss their insurance contracts project.

    21 March 2012 FASB meeting

    The Board is scheduled to discuss minor issues on technical projects, agenda decisions or administrative matters.

    3 April FASB webcast, IN FOCUS: Using XBRL Tables

    The FASB will host a webcast to discuss the 2012 US GAAP Financial Reporting Taxonomy for public companies. For details, see the FASB site.

    Education sessions

    See the FASB calendar for upcoming education sessions. No decisions are made at these sessions.

    Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)

    Did you forget to report your decision on the frequency of 'say-on-pay' votes?

    The SEC staff has noted that many companies have failed to file an amended 8-K disclosing the timing of the next shareholder vote on executive compensation ("say-on-pay" vote) under Exchange Act Rule 14a-21. As specified by Item 5.07(d) of Form 8-K, the amendment was required to be filed within 150 days of the annual meeting at which shareholders were able to weigh in on how frequently to hold the say-on-pay vote.

    Companies that fail to make the disclosure by the deadline are not considered "timely" for purposes of Form S-3 eligibility. These companies must obtain a waiver from the SEC staff before filing a new Form S-3 or issuing securities from an existing shelf registration statement. The SEC staff has granted waivers when the company's board has followed the shareholders' advice on frequency.

    Government Accounting Standards Board (GASB)

    GASB report issued

    The GASB has issued a new edition of its monthly summary of events, the GASB Report.

    International Accounting Standards Board (IASB)

    Amendment to IFRS 1 - Government loans

    On 13 March 2012, the IASB issued amendments to IFRS 1, First-time Adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards, providing an exception for accounting for government loans at below-market rates of interest. Entities are required to apply the amendments for annual periods beginning on or after 1 January 2013. Earlier application is permitted.

    Upcoming Thought center webcasts and podcasts

    Bottom-line benefits of sustainable business practices 
    Global survey results and discussion of action steps - a webcast by Ernst & Young LLP and GreenBiz
    19 March 2012, 1:00 p.m. Eastern time

    The Ernst & Young Q1 2012 financial reporting update 
    Co-sponsored by Financial Executives International
    22 March 2012, 1:00 p.m. Eastern time

    Accounting for income taxes: a quarterly perspective
    27 March 2012, 11:00 a.m. Eastern time


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