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Accounting News Roundup: The New Lease Accounting Exposure Draft Is Here; PCAOB Deal with China?; This Accountant Love KFC More Than You | 05.16.13

IASB and FASB Propose Changes to Lease Accounting [FASB, ED]
The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) today published for public comment a revised Exposure Draft outlining proposed changes to the accounting for leases. The proposal aims to improve the quality and comparability of financial reporting by providing greater transparency about leverage, the assets an organization uses in its operations and the risks to which it is exposed from entering into leasing transactions.

Significant Changes Proposed in Lease Accounting [NYT]
Under the proposal, issued jointly by the international board, which sets rules for many countries around the globe, and by the Financial Accounting Standards Board, which writes the United States rules, [e.g.] an airline entering into a lease for a plane would show an asset of the right to use the plane and an equal liability based on the current value of the lease payments it has promised to make. That accounting would be similar to what it would show had it borrowed money to buy the plane.

Camp Statement on Miller Resignation [Ways and Means]
“The American people should be able to trust and have faith that, not only the IRS, but that the tax code will treat them fairly.  This resignation does nothing to change the culture of discrimination at the IRS.  And, it certainly does nothing to change the fact that the tax system is targeting honest, hardworking taxpayers instead of working for them.  There are still far too many unanswered questions and until we know what truly happened, we cannot fully fix what is wrong.  This Committee wants the facts, and the American people deserve answers to why they were targeted on the basis of their political beliefs.  The IRS has demonstrated a culture of cover up and has failed time and time again to be completely open and honest with the American people.  This investigation will continue so Congress can ensure that no taxpayer is unfairly targeted. The Committee and the American people deserve honest answers from Mr. Miller at our hearing this Friday."

Possible PCAOB deal [China Accounting Blog]
It sounds like the PCAOB is going to have take a crappy deal: "
I expect the agreement will be announced as part of the Strategic and Economic Dialogue between the U.S. and China scheduled to take place in early July. Once the SEC gets the requested working papers, I expect it will dismiss the case against the firms. That removes the most urgent risk that the accounting firms might lose the right to practice. Accordingly, this agreement likely removes the risk that U.S. listed Chinese companies will be delisted.  For the PCAOB, the agreement is a painful compromise. There is no deal allowing for inspections. But the protocol might allow working papers to be shipped to the PCAOB in the U.S. for inspection, presumably after being redacted for state secrets. That is a poor substitute for on the ground inspections. I believe that the PCAOB is facing significant political pressure to accept this deal."
Google Denies Misleading Parliament Over U.K. Tax Liabilities [Bloomberg]

Matt Brittin, vice president for sales and operations in northern and central Europe for the world’s most popular Internet search engine, said he stood by November testimony that the company pays taxes where it creates “economic value.” Lawmakers today tried to establish whether the company was closing sales in the U.K., making it liable for more tax. “Nobody in the U.K. has had an opportunity to close a transaction with a customer,” Brittin told the cross-party Public Accounts Committee. “I stand by what I have said."
IRS Delay in Disclosing Groups’ Scrutiny Focus of Probes [BBW]

“My question is who’s going to jail over this scandal?” House Speaker John Boehner told reporters today. “Someone made the conscious decision to harass and to hold up these requests for tax-exempt status,” said Boehner, an Ohio Republican. “Clearly someone violated the law.”

The other IRS scandal [CJR]
David Cay Johnston lists a few, including: "Missing from much coverage is the relevant recent history—the role of the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision and how it prompted a deluge of requests from new organizations seeking tax-exempt status under tax code Section 501(c)(4) as “social welfare” organizations—despite the fact that many of these are blatantly political operations."

KFC smugglers bring buckets of chicken through Gaza tunnels [CSM]
For six years, Rafat Shororo longed for the taste of a KFC sandwich he had eaten in Egypt. This week, he got his finger lickin' fix at home in the Gaza Strip after a local delivery company managed to smuggle it from Egypt through underground tunnels. "It has been a dream, and this company has made my dream come true," says Mr. Shororo, an accountant, as he receives his order from the delivery guy.


Posted in ANR