Discuss about the Current Development in Accounting Thought for Accounting Global Market.
This paper intends to explain new accounting trends in the global market through the help of ideologies proposed by Australia Accounting Standard Board (AASB) and AUASB. It coins these new regulations with accounting theories that too contribute to defining the accounting scope. It dwells more on the new trends proposed by AASB and AUSB on 4th April 2016. It suggests how the trends can improve production and limit mistakes committed by auditors and accountants while making a financial statement for the periods of trade.
Definition of Accounting
Accounting is among the branches of business that operate to identify, measure and communicate information for judgments. It is organized in a way to allow for effective decision making by parties concerned in the statements of accounting. It outlines the financial status of an entity about both assets and liabilities inclusive of an entity equity (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). In most occasions, entities and other relevant users do rely on accounting components to determine how far the business has been operating in connection to profits, short term liabilities and long-term liabilities. Investors consult by accounting to make right decisions dictating a business to invest in and the ones not worth enough for investment. (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). Thus it goes with no say that having standardized guidelines on the operation of accounting global can have a complimentary roles to other fields (Collins, & McKeith, 2010). Considering the role accounting plays in the general business wide scope, it is in demand to define standardized regulations through which certainty of its application is assured. In Australia, drastic changes have been proposed by relevant bodies to ensure that accounting in the country tally with the global requirements projected through new era innovations. AASB and AUSB have proposed various strategies and policies that if well implemented can end the stalemate created by both accountants and auditors. Thus raises questions of reliability and faithfulness of accounts estimates done at every end periods of trade (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016).
Emerging Trends Proposed by AASB and AUSB In Australia
The two Boards have been consulting on how accounting department in the country can emulate global requirements. Among the guidelines deemed necessary are the area of expertise, the mandated roles, specific accounting areas that require attention, connection of stakeholders in the accommodative and coherent way and the challenges (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). To ensure implementation of the new trends, the Boards decided to maximize regulation over companies to ensure efficient and productive application outcome, provide consumers with access to information, lower costs of regulatory practices and appropriate use of new technology to identify risks (Peach, 2016).
The new trends that got implemented as at 30th June 2016 are;
A) Accounting for Acquisitions of Interests in Joint Operations is a new amendment which concentrates on the joint arrangement where the party acquiring an interest in an operation termed common is known as an inquirer (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016).. Transactions involved in the joint includes business. This joint business should adhere to the following conditions:
Ensure use of all business combination accounting principles in Accounting for Acquisitions of Interest in Joint Operation trend (ASSB 3). It too should comply with Australia Accounting Standards apart from the principles conflicting with guidelines of AASB 11. The requirement considers the use of acquisition of additional interests in the joint business is hence giving an inquirer an opportunity to retain a common control of the joint operation. Also, the requirements in the joint operation do only apply to additional interest. Meaning, it does not value a current interest (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016).
The amendment provides business with disclosure as defined by ASSB 3 and according to Australian Accounting Standards.
B) Classify acceptable depreciation and amortization methods. The amendment prevents or does not allow the use of a revenue-based method of depreciation on property, plant, and equipment (Peach, 2016). It offers guidelines for the use of diminishing balance method on property, plant, and equipment. However, according to AASB 138, a revenue-based method of amortization for intangible assets is not appropriate for use. Though it can apply to the situations:
It shall apply if assets considered intangible are defined as a measure through which revenue is measured. This happens if an intangible asset has a contributable ability to achieve revenue threshold.
It is too applicable when it can show a high correlation between revenue and economic benefits consumption.
C) Agriculture: Bearer Plants. This amendment considers the definition of plants and expects such plants to be accounted for under property, plant, and equipment. This is an expectation that has relation with Property, Plant and Equipment amendment (ASSB 116).
D) Equity Method in Separate Financial Statements has an amendment which coins the equity method of accounting with other methods within an entity’s investment in subsidiaries, joint venture and associates in separate financial statements entry (CPA Australia, 2012).
E) Annual Improvements to Australian Accounting Standards. The amendment in part of Annual Improvements to IFRS. It explains on an entity reclassifies of asset thus not being considered for sale but distribution or vice-versa (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). It outlines when an entity considers an asset is no longer for immediate distribution. It too illustrates when an asset’s probability of being distributed is not high. It is not appropriate for held for distribution accounting.
F) Disclosure Initiative. Disclosure Initiative Amendment includes the following:
It provides clarification on materiality requirements. These clarifications are about the potentiality of the detrimental effect of closed information considered useful with immaterial information.
It provides clarification on the items to be included in the financial statements like comprehensive profit and loss statement, income statement, and the statement of financial position (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016).
It adds requirements based on the entity’s presentation of subtotals in the financial statements deemed relevant.
It provides clarification on entity’s flexibility depending on how they present note. However, it emphasizes on the ability of an entity to understand and compare their orders.
It eliminates guidelines of no importance to help in identification of significant accounting policy.
G) Financial Requirements for Australia Group with a Foreign Parent. The policy amends Investment in Associates and Joint Ventures. It aligns its reporting requirements among Australian to align with foreign policies. It ensures that there is harmony between guidelines in Consolidated Financial Statement and Investment in Associates and Joint Venture for the groups involved.
H) Application of Australian Accounting Standards. The country revised its AASB which contained IFRS concepts. It aimed at minimizing wording. IFRS lacked a sentence that identifies the entities and financial reports (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016).
I) Leases concept in accounting is another emerging trend that tries to force commitment by lessees on leases. This is to get demonstrated in the balance sheet. It has a possibility of affecting companies operating on leases. However, it exempts short-term and low-value leases. It will enhance recognition of leases in the balance sheet by lessees. The concept of lease liability is well demonstrated in the trend.
Other accounting new trends are;
Procedures of recognizing revenues
Policy judgments on estimates and accounting
New revenue and financial instruments standards impact
The arrangement of the off-balance sheet (CPA Australia, 2012).
Theories of Accounting
Theories guiding Accounting are defined and protected by bodies like American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AIPAC) International Accounting Standards (ASB) and International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). The bodies prevent accountants and other users from exploiting accounting principles which work in collaboration with accounting theories.
International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) with other bodies like AICPA and IASB set standards of accounting. The standards among other guidelines defining accounting are operating under the dictation of principles. They include;
Revenue recognition; outlines the need to earn revenue first is when it can get recorded in the books account. It is applied depending on the project value, period and methods applied to collect revenues.
Recognition of gains and losses; it defines on how accountants should do their gain recordings after realizing loss or losses. Therefore, it prohibits recording of gains a head of loss realization.
Cost principle; applicable when a transaction occurs between different parties. It can either be purchase or buying of a product. While recording, cost principle is applied.
Full disclosure; different bodies are in tussle to effectively make this principle uniform, however, different opinions from different bodies controlling accounting do deter the objective. Through IFRS, accountants get advised not to disclose to any other person or party without confirmation on the intended investment need. It posits a contradiction in the field of accounting with some accounts providing misleading information or refuse to disclose appropriately (Collins & McKeith, 2010.
Positive theory of accounting
Positive theory of accounting concentrates on what is being done or what has been done. Actual observation on what an entity is doing is the center of reasoning in positive theory of accounting. (Collins & McKeith, 2010. It deems irrelevant an argument concentrating on what is supposed to be done or what an entity ought to do. Different stakeholders use positive theory concept to make decisions.
The theory values what ought to be done not what is being done nor has been. The theory contradicts positive theory reasoning and values accounting concepts by evaluating the need to do what ought to done (Angus, 2012). It is concerned with improvement in the field of accounting through supporting new accounting developments as well as identifying new relevant trends.
The two theories are applied simultaneously to ensure that credibility of accounting techniques is maintained. To effectively achieve a dynamic and reliable accounting, the two theories should be applied depending on the market requirements and innovative exploration.. Considering that the market trend composed of innovation and technological changes, the different amendment is done to ensure reliability accounting figures.
Major Issues in the New Accounting Trend
The major issues in the new accounting trend demonstrated are dwelling around the cash flow. It clearly looks at the cash flow from the start to the end of accounting period (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). Through a financial statement, change in cash is given priority as well as cash equivalents throughout accounting period. Restriction of cash and cash equivalent from the start date to end date is another vital point noted. Also, there is a point on reconciliation of cash and cash flow that are restricted. According to disclosure principle, the change portrayed in the essay contradict the concept of appropriate consideration of the restricted cash (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). Disclosure principle enhances the consistency among other objectives deemed important by entities. Restricted cash and restricted cash equivalent concept in accounting promote consistency as well as creating benefits to users who do depend on such entry in the financial statements. Though, it has some challenges mostly to those who are fond of using cash and cash equivalent to reconcile their statements. In a nutshell, the concepts raised are closure principles which are important in exposing information to relevant users, reconciliation of financial statement and lastly, the cash and equivalent cash restrictions (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016).
Different Views from Different Respondents
Among the respondents I selected, there is no direct linkage on their views concerning new proposed trend on accounting. They differ slightly and concur in a way or other over some issues. To start with is the American Institute of CPA (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). It agrees with the policy restricting cash and cash equivalent. It fairly supports the need to disclose on the financial statement on cash flow from the start time to end time. At the same time, it fairly contradicts the idea of transition closure which argues that it should have classifications (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). It values restricted cash and restricted cash equivalents important in the disclosure principle compared to cash and cash equivalent. This will enhance effective and efficient communication of cash flow and outflow. It considers terminating the need to differentiate unrestricted cash and restricted cash. An idea that aims at creating uniformity in accounting process of money.
Funnily enough, it supports disclosure policy on the financial statement and amounts though rejects disclosure on gross transfer. It reiterates on the complexity of such disclosure in the system leading to irrelevancy on the financial statement. Such disclosure leads to confusion scenarios on sources of cash and non-sources of cash. The American Institute of CPA supports the use of retrospective transition in the disclosure principle (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). The company believes that its application enhances amendment effectiveness. However, it disagrees with the proposed dates if implementation, which it says is ambiguous to elaborate for other stakeholders to understand (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). The company accepts the need to modify clarification on the changes. Even though there is a proposal of updating changes on the system, it refutes and illustrates how worthless such actions are. About implementation, The American Institute of CPA critics the procedure; contradictory and unprecise (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016).
It suggests a one-year transition period to accommodate both private and private sectors. Time issuance is an important idea that can play huge in the implementation of the principle proposed. Therefore, there should be an integration period through which cash receipts and cash flows and statement cash flows are adjusted. Hence promote the need to adopt a new principle as early as possible (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). The Accounting Principles Committee of Illinois CPA Society do agree with new proposed policy. It expects the policy to enhance consistency and helps in decision making. Though, it considers reconciliation not well drafted on restricted cash and restricted cash equivalent. The Society appreciates the use of cash and cash equivalent with no restrictions.
To its view, forced reconciliation on restricted concepts hinders ability to prepare a flexible and efficient statement. It therefore, advice for a separate entry of cash and cash equivalents from restricted cash and cash equivalent. The company negates the idea proposed concerning the disclosure principle with gross transfers. It believes that it is important to report the acquisition of cash and cash equivalent at end time (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016). Comparing the for companies of my survey, they have almost related ideologies towards the new principle and policies, though every company has a way in which it does not support even a single content in the policy.
Assumptions under Public Interest Theory, Private Interest Theory, and Capture Theory.
Public interest theory calls for a regulation of market operations (Graffikin, 2005). It considers a need to have a body that can step up to control market operations during crisis. Market crisis can happen due to customer exploitation or inequality in production possibilities. It illustrates that intervention prevents market ineffectiveness (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016).
Private interest theory on other side assumes that market is self-driving. It argues that it is not only important for a market to have intervention from other bodies during crisis but always. Private theory deem firms responsible for their operations thus able to select favorable market situations for their products and services (Australia Accounting Standard Board, 2016).
Capture theory assumes that control bodies of the government operates with the motive of helping the general public but not industries themselves. It provides deep analysis on the connection between a regulatory body and industries in operation.
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