Magazine article The CPA Journal

Accounting and Auditing Resources on the Web

Magazine article The CPA Journal

Accounting and Auditing Resources on the Web

Article excerpt

Because the organizations that create accounting and auditing standards maintain websites, the World Wide Web now presents a convenient way to keep current on technical developments. Moreover, many questions on accounting and auditing issues can be answered by searching sites that provide accounting and auditing related information, researching sites that contain the authoritative pronouncements, submitting questions to specialists, or posting questions to online forums (See the Sidebar). Financial Accounting

Financial Accounting Standards Board This site is helpful for following FASB and Emerging Issues Task Force (AT activities. The "publications" section contains summaries of all FASB Statements that are Category A GAAP. The MIT section under the "technical projects" link provides a summary of EITF current issues and indicates whether a consensus has been reached. This link also provides access to the technical inquiry service, which consists of an online form for submitting questions about FASB literature and projects. The site includes meeting agendas, exposure drafts, press releases, a quarterly plan of technical items under review, and e mail addresses for FASB board members and staff.

Governmental Accounting Standards Board GASB establishes financial reporting standards applicable to state and local governmental entities. The site's "publications" section contains summaries of three categories of GAAP: GASB Statements (Category A); GASB Interpretations (Category A); and GASB Concept Statements (Category E). The site has other items related to GASB activities: exposure drafts, news releases, agendas for board meetings, and GASB's Technical Project Plan, which details project objectives and status. The "performance measures" section has extensive information about reporting on service efforts and accomplishments. The "communicate" section provides e-mail addresses and phone numbers for GASB board members and staff.

Accounting Standards Team. The objectives of the Accounting Standards Team are to determine the AICPA's technical policies regarding financial accounting and reporting standards and serve as spokesperson on these matters; to provide guidance to AICPA members on financial accounting or reporting issues not otherwise covered in authoritative literature; and to influence the form and content of pronouncements from FASB, GASB, the International Accounting Standards Committee (IASC), and other bodies with authority over financial accounting or reporting standards. This website's resources also include highlights of recent AcSEC meetings, newsletters, meeting dates, and exposure drafts.

Securities and Exchange Commission. Accountants of public companies will find useful links in the "current SEC rulemaking" section of this website. The "proposed rules" link lists rule proposals related to accounting and other SEC matters; comments may be submitted by e-mail. The "final rules" section lists final rules currently available. The site also lists recent pronouncements, such as Staff Accounting Bulletins (SAB) Nos. 94-10111. New SABs and concept and interpretative releases can be found in this section.

Accountants will be interested in the "other commission notices and information" section. For example, the Division of Corporation Finance has posted a "Frequently Requested Accounting and Financial Reporting Interpretations and Guidance" document that explains many issues related to accounting rules and disclosures.

Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board At its October 1999 meeting, AICPA Council adopted a restlution recognizing the FASAB as the body responsible for establishing GAAP for federal government entities. In response to Council's vote, the Accounting Standards Board (ASB) proposed recognizing FASAB statements as Category A GAAP. FASAB standards and concepts are posted on its website.

Auditing

Audit and Attest Standards This site distributes information about ASB pronouncements. …

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