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At the December 4, 2012 AICPA Conference on Current SEC and PCAOB Developments, both the FASB Chair Leslie Seidman and IASB Chair Hans Hoogervorst spoke on the topic of convergence.
The IASB Chair indicated the importance of convergence for the U.S. and how convergence would allow the U.S. to move away from rule based approach to principle based approach. He believes this will provide the U.S. standard setters with better guidance and will unify financial reporting.
Hans was disappointed with the delay in adoption of IFRS and the U.S. remaining silent on final adoption date. Additionally, those who are for IFRS adoption expressed frustration when the SEC issued a report in July of 2012 on the Pros and Cons on IFRS in the United States as oppose to providing a clear date on IFRS adoption. The SEC has remained silent on IFRS in the United States since it issued the report on IFRS in July 2012.
Leslie from the FASB expressed concern on the U.S. involvement if we adopt IFRS and also how certain countries deviate from IFRS which result in inconsistencies in the application of IFRS between countries. Additionally, she wanted to have a better understanding of the cost benefit of adopting IFRS.
With no real clarity by the SEC on the convergence project and the FASB needing further discussions with the IFRS Chair keeping this in my mind leaves the future of cooperation between the boards in question and the adoption of IFRS through either full adoption or convergence in the near term to be unlikely. We will keep you posted on any new development on IFRS.