Author:Grant Thornton
Profession:Grant Thornton LLP

New guidance clarifies timing for release of cumulative translation adjustments

The FASB has issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2013-05, Parent's Accounting for the Cumulative Translation Adjustment upon Derecognition of Certain Subsidiaries or Groups of Assets within a Foreign Entity or of an Investment in a Foreign Entity - a consensus of the FASB Emerging Issues Task Force, to resolve diversity in practice about the timing of an entity's release of cumulative translation adjustments from accumulated other comprehensive income into net income.

For more information about the new guidance, refer to the summary of the EITF's consensus in the January 22, 2013 On the Horizon.

March 6 meeting focuses on insurance contracts

All decisions reached at Board meetings are tentative and may be changed at future meetings. Decisions are included in an Exposure Draft only after a formal written ballot. Decisions reflected in Exposure Drafts are often changed in redeliberations by the Board based on information received in comment letters, at public roundtable discussions, and from other sources. Board decisions become final after a formal written ballot to issue a final Accounting Standards Update.

On March 6, the FASB resumed its ongoing discussion of insurance contracts, focusing on the following topics.

Changes in estimated interest crediting and accretion rates

The Board tentatively confirmed its previous decision not to require insurers to disaggregate contractual cash flows into those affected, and those unaffected, by returns from assets when determining discount rates that reflect characteristics of the contract's cash flows. The discount rates should reflect the degree to which estimated cash flows, subject to insurer discretion, are affected by asset returns.

The Board also reached tentative decisions on accounting for changes in an insurer's expectations of the crediting rate used to measure the insurance contracts liability.

Fair value option

Board members tentatively agreed to eliminate the fair value option election in FASB Accounting Standards Codification® (ASC) 825, Financial Instruments, for the following items:

Guarantees and other contingencies within the scope of ASC 460, Guarantees Contingencies under ASC 450, Contingencies Rights and obligations under an insurance contract Obligations under a warranty that are either subject to the guidance in ASC 944, Financial Services - Insurance, or accounted for under the proposed...

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