FASB accused of straying from SEC on ‘transparency’

BVWireIssue #46-2
July 19, 2006

In the first release from their ground-breaking joint effort, US FASB and the IASB each published a “consultative document” outlining their preliminary views on a conceptual framework for financial reporting. FASB posted the document on its website, www.fasb.org; while the IASB first published theirs as a discussion paper, available through an online subscription—it has promised to post it publicly by July 17, 2006 at www.iasb.org. “The publication of the boards’ joint preliminary views reflects their shared commitment to build upon, improve and achieve the convergence of their existing conceptual frameworks,” according to a recent FASB statement, including creating a more “effective guide in developing global financial reporting standards.”

But at least one watchdog begs to differ. Last week, editors at CFO.com accused the FASB/IASB conceptual framers as “parting ways” with the SEC’s views on transparency. While SEC Chairman Christopher Cox has demanded transparency of financial information and the rules that govern its release, CFO.com says that in their preliminary report, FASB/IASB require only transparency of information. See www.cfo.com/article.cfm/1_comments/7157318?context_id=2984368.

FASB responds: A FASB representative has already accused CFO.com of releasing its story without seeking input from the organizations. BVWire has just extended an invitation for FASB to comment on the controversy, and was accepted . . . so stay tuned.

Please let us know if you have any comments about this article or enhancements you would like to see.