Click here to view the Agenda for the AASB Research Forum
The Australian Accounting Standards Board (AASB) together with the University of New South Wales, co-hosted the annual AASB Research Forum on Monday, November 29, where academics and financial reporting stakeholders from the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors came together to discuss the following three research projects:
An evaluation of the impacts of the adoption of AASB 15 Revenue from Contracts with Customers
Dr Le Ma, University of Technology Sydney
Professor Peter Wells, University of Technology Sydney
Associate Professor Helen Spiropoulos, University of Technology Sydney
Sebastian Onie, University of Technology Sydney
The objective of this paper is to evaluate the impact of the adoption of IFRS 15 Revenue from Contracts with Customers on the relevance of general purpose financial reports for Australian listed firms. There was considerable variation in the impacts and the disclosures made relating to transition to the new standard, and that many firms transitioned with minimal disclosures. This included firms where the impacts were material. There is some evidence that the impacts of transitioning to the new accounting standard were targeted at firms where earnings were less relevant. However, there is little evidence that the new standard improved the relevance of earnings generally, and whether it resolved issues with the relevance of earnings is doubtful.
Presentation prominence: Does it matter to non-professional investors? The case of ‘Other Comprehensive Income’
Dr Troy Yao, Queensland University of Technology
Associate Professor Tyge Kummer, Queensland University of Technology
Associate Professor Majella Percy, Griffith University
Emeritus Professor Jenny Stewart, Griffith University
We use an experimental method to investigate whether the presentation format (e.g., labelling) of other comprehensive income (OCI) influences the decisions of non-professional investors. We also examine whether a firm’s financial performance has an impact on this association. We find that non-professional investors are more likely to incorporate OCI information into their decisions when OCI items are presented with clearer labels. The findings suggest that investors perceive OCI information to be more value relevant with clearer labels. Furthermore, we identify that financial performance is an important factor that explains the likelihood of investors processing OCI information. We find non-professional investors are more likely to use OCI information when the company exhibits negative income. Overall, our results indicate that improving the presentation of OCI items can enhance the decision-usefulness of financial information.
Decision Usefulness: A re-examination of the information needs of non-profit GPFR users
Click here to access the Research Paper for this topic
Dr Craig Furneaux, Queensland University of Technology
Professor David Gilchrist, University of Western Australia
Associate Professor Andrew West, Queensland University of Technology
Dr Yuyu Zhang, Queensland University of Technology
The extent to which financial reports are decision useful is of central importance in relation to the accounting standards that underpin them. This is as true of non-profit financial reporting as it is of financial reporting in the commercial and public sectors. In this paper we report on our findings related to a research project focused on examining the decision usefulness of Australian accounting standards from the point of view of non-profit Users, Preparers and Auditors. Undertaking a series of round tables specific to each cohort, we examine the question of who is accountable, for what and to whom in the context of financial reporting. Our research reinforced a number of issues negatively impacting the ability of General Purpose Financial Reports to facilitate decision making in the non-profit sector. However, we also identified a number of new issues related to financial reporting generally and current and prospective accounting standards specifically. Some of these phenomena appear to have manifested as a result of the impact of COVID and some of which are impacted by a changing funding environment. Overall, the project found that there are manifest specific issues and aspects which are particular to the sector and that need to be considered by standard setters in considering future frameworks and standards themselves.
The 2021 AASB Research Forum included expert panel discussions, live audience Q&As, as well as special keynote speakers.
Ann Tarca from the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) was our second Keynote Speaker and Ann provided an IASB Update. Click here to view a pdf version of her presentation.