Valuators can play vital role in improving fair value process and practices

BVWireIssue #77-1
February 4, 2009

In his address to Summit attendees, the SEC’s Sussholz emphasized the expanding role that business appraisers and valuation specialists can take during the current economic crisis, particularly in the wake of the Commission’s just-released Study on Mark-to-Market Accounting and its recommendations not to suspend FAS 157’s fair value measurements and mark-to-market accounting standards (See BVWire™ #76-1.)

Appraisers can help with best practices standards, he said, especially in the areas of appraising inactive assets and incorporating liquidity and credit risks into valuations. Indeed, according to Sussholz, “Valuation specialists and appraisal associations can play a vital role in developing best practice documents, reducing diversity in practice, and ensuring that guidance is disseminated more broadly among the financial reporting community.” In addition, although the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) is ultimately responsible for determining the role of its Valuation Resource Group (VRG), appraisers can help make FASB's standard setting process more public, Sussholz said, and they can “help get the necessary information and guidance out to a broader community.”

“The FASB is definitely listening to the input of the valuation community as it applies to fair value for financial reporting,” confirmed Kristofer Anderson, a FASB Valuation Fellow who also spoke at the Summit. A possible starting point: tune into the VRG’s public broadcasts. For more information, visit the FASB Web site.

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