Example accounting policies

Example accounting policies

Get the requirements for properly disclosing the accounting policies to provide the users of your financial statements with useful financial data, in the common language prescribed in the world’s most widely used standards for financial reporting, the IFRS Standards. First there is a section providing guidance on what the requirements are, followed by a comprehensive example, easy to tailor to the specific needs of your company.Example accounting policies

Example accounting policies guidance

Whether to disclose an accounting policy

1. In deciding whether a particular accounting policy should be disclosed, management considers whether disclosure would assist users in understanding how transactions, other events and conditions are reflected in the reported financial performance and financial position. Disclosure of particular accounting policies is especially useful to users where those policies are selected from alternatives allowed in IFRS. [IAS 1.119]

2. Some IFRSs specifically require disclosure of particular accounting policies, including choices made by management between different policies they allow. For example, IAS 16 Property, Plant and Equipment requires disclosure of the measurement bases used for classes of property, plant and equipment and IFRS 3 Business Combinations requires disclosure of the measurement basis used for non-controlling interest acquired during the period.

3. In this guidance, policies are disclosed that are specific to the entity and relevant for an understanding of individual line items in the financial statements, together with the notes for those line items. Other, more general policies are disclosed in the note 25 in the example below. Where permitted by local requirements, entities could consider moving these non-entity-specific policies into an Appendix.

Change in accounting policy – new and revised accounting standards

4. Where an entity has changed any of its accounting policies, either as a result of a new or revised accounting standard or voluntarily, it must explain the change in its notes. Additional disclosures are required where a policy is changed retrospectively, see note 26 for further information. [IAS 8.28]

5. New or revised accounting standards and interpretations only need to be disclosed if they resulted in a change in accounting policy which had an impact in the current year or could impact on future periods. There is no need to disclose pronouncements that did not have any impact on the entity’s accounting policies and amounts recognised in the financial statements. [IAS 8.28]

6. For the purpose of this edition, it is assumed that RePort Co. PLC did not have to make any changes to its accounting policies, as it is not affected by the interest rate benchmark reforms, and the other amendments summarised in Appendix D are only clarifications that did not require any changes. However, this assumption will not necessarily apply to all entities. Where there has been a change in policy, this will need to be explained, see note 26 for further information.

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M and A

M and A or Mergers and Acquisitions

in IFRS language Business Combinations.

1 Identifying a business combination

IFRS 3 refers to a ‘business combination’ rather than more commonly used phrases such as takeover, acquisition or merger because the objective is to encompass all the transactions in which an acquirer obtains control over an acquiree no matter how the transaction is structured. A business combination is defined as a transaction or other event in which an acquirer (an investor entity) obtains control of one or more businesses.

An entity’s purchase of a controlling interest in another unrelated operating entity will usually be a business combination (see Simple case – Straightforward business combination below). However, a business combination (M and A) may be structured, and an entity may obtain control of that structure, in a variety of ways.

Examples of business combinations structurings

Examples of ways an entity may obtain control

A business becomes the subsidiary of an acquirer

The entity transfers cash, cash equivalents or other assets(including net assets that constitute a business)

Net assets of one or more businesses are legally merged with an acquirer

The entity incurs liabilities

One combining entity transfers its net assets, or its owners transfer their equity interests, to another combining entity or its owners

The entity issues shares

The entity transfers more than one type of consideration, or

Two or more entities transfer their net assets, or the owners of those entities transfer their equity interests to a newly created entity, which in exchange issues shares, or

The entity does not transfer consideration and obtains control for example by contract alone Some examples of this:

  • ‘dual listed companies’ or ‘stapled entity structures’
  • acquiree repurchases a sufficient number of its own shares for an existing shareholder to obtain control
  • a condition in the shareholder agreement that prevents the majority shareholder exercising control of the entity has expired, or
  • a call option over a controlling interest that becomes exercisable.

A group of former owners of one of the combining entities obtains control of the combined entity, i.e. former owners, as a group, retain control of the entity they previously owned.

Therefore, identifying a business combination transaction requires the determination of whether:

  • what is acquired constitutes a ‘business’ as defined in IFRS3, and
  • control has been obtained.

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Disclosure Corporate Income Tax

Disclosure Corporate Income Tax

– provides guidance on the disclosure requirements under IFRS for IAS 12 income tax and provides a comprehensive example of a potential disclosures for these income taxes/corporate income tax.

Disclosure corporate income tax – Guidance

Relationship between tax expense and accounting profit

Entities can explain the relationship between tax expense (income) and accounting profit by disclosing reconciliations between: [IAS 12.81(c), IAS 12.85]

  1. tax expense and the product of accounting profit multiplied by the applicable tax rate, or
  2. the average effective tax rate and the applicable tax rate.

The applicable tax rate can either be the domestic rate of tax in the country in which the entity is domiciled, or it can be determined by aggregating separate reconciliations prepared using the domestic rate in each individual jurisdiction. Entities should choose the method that provides the most meaningful information to users.

Where an entity uses option (a) above and reconciles tax expense to the tax that is calculated by multiplying accounting profit with the applicable tax rate, the standard does not specify whether the reconciliation should be done for total tax expense, or only for tax expense attributable to continuing operations. While RePorting Co. Plc is reconciling total tax expense, it is equally acceptable to use profit from continuing operations as a starting point.

Initial recognition exemption – subsequent amortisation

The amount shown in the reconciliation of prima facie income tax payable to income tax expense as ‘amortisation of intangibles’ represents the amortisation of a temporary difference that arose on the initial recognition of the asset and for which no deferred tax liability has been recognised in accordance with IAS 12.15(b). The initial recognition exemption only applies to transactions that are not a business combination and do not affect either accounting profit or taxable profit.

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IAS 36 Other impairment issues

IAS 36 Other impairment issues – When looking at the step-by-step IAS 36 impairment approach it comes down to the following broadly organised steps: IAS 36 How Impairment test

  • What?? – Determining the scope and structure of the impairment review, explained here,
  • If and when? – Determining if and when a quantitative impairment test is necessary, explained here,
  • IAS 36 How Impairment test or understanding the mechanics of the impairment test and how to recognise or reverse any impairment loss, if necessary, which is explained here

IAS 36 Other impairment issues discusses other common application issues encountered when applying IAS 36, including those related to:

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3 powerful capital maintenance concepts

3 powerful capital maintenance concepts – There are three (or two a matter of definition) concepts of capital: a financial concept of capital (nominal maintenance and purchasing power maintenance) and a physical concept of capital. Under the financial concept, capital is defined as the net assets or equity of the enterprise, while under the physical concept, capital is defined as the productive capacity of the enterprise expressed in some physical units of measurement, as for example units of output per day.

The selection of the appropriate concept of capital by an enterprise should be based on the needs of the users of its financial statements. So, the financial concept of capital should be and mostly is used by the financial … Read more

Deferred tax liabilities

Deferred tax liabilities are recognised when there is a taxable temporary difference between the tax base of an asset or liability and its IFRS carrying amount

Notes to the financial statements

Notes to the financial statements that contain information in addition to the statement of financial position, of financial performance, of changes in equity

Income tax

Income tax - by law, but with a lot of different perks dependent on the country one pays its taxes, businesses and individuals must file income tax returns

Corporate taxes

Corporate taxesCorporate taxes – also called income taxes, but than for corporates. Here we go…………  Just a reminder …… Two things in life are certain: …… DEATH……. and ……..TAXES

What is it about?

IAS 12 Income taxes prescribes the accounting treatment for income taxes being the accounting for the current and future tax consequences of:

  • the future recovery (settlement) of the carrying amount of assets (liabilities) that are recognised in an entity’s statement of financial position, and Corporate taxes
  • transactions and other events of the current period that are recognised in an entity’s financial report. Corporate taxes

Current tax – Recognition and measurement

IAS 12 requires the recognition of current tax in an entity’s financial statements. Current tax for current and … Read more

IFRS 3 Identify a business

IFRS 3 Identify a business – An entity shall determine whether a transaction or other event is a business combination by applying the definition in IFRS 3, which requires that the assets acquired and liabilities assumed constitute a business. If the assets acquired are not a business, the reporting entity shall account for the transaction or other event as an asset acquisitionSee also the accounting treatment acquisition of a business or asset(s) 

Guidance on identifying a business combination and the definition of a business are as follows:

The definition of a business: An integrated set of activities and assets that is capable of being conducted and managed for the purpose of providing goods or services to customers, generating investment income (such as dividends or interest) or generating other income from ordinary activities.

Identifying a business combination [IFRS 3 B5 – B6] IFRS 3 Identify a business

IFRS 3 defines a business combination as a transaction or other event in which an acquirer obtains control of one or more businesses. An acquirer might obtain control of an acquiree in a variety IFRS 3 Identify a businessof ways, for example:

  1. by transferring cash, cash equivalents or other assets (including net assets that constitute a business);
  2. by incurring liabilities; IFRS 3 Identify a business
  3. by issuing equity interests; IFRS 3 Identify a business
  4. by providing more than one type of consideration; or
  5. without transferring consideration, including by contract alone.

A business combination may be structured in a variety of ways for legal, taxation or other reasons, which include but are not limited to:

  1. one or more businesses become subsidiaries of an acquirer or the net assets of one or more businesses are legally merged into the acquirer;
  2. one combining entity transfers its net assets, or its owners transfer their equity interests, to another combining entity or its owners;
  3. all of the combining entities transfer their net assets, or the owners of those entities transfer their equity interests, to a newly formed entity (sometimes referred to as a roll-up or put-together transaction); or
  4. a group of former owners of one of the combining entities obtains control of the combined entity.

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