Technical resource centre

Welcome to the Chartered Accountants Ireland's Technical Resource Centre. This resource area is aimed at keeping Members up to date with the latest technical news and helpful resources to keep them abreast of current developments worldwide. There is also a link to our Technical Enquiry Service in contacts and support.

Latest news

Developments of interest this week are set out below.    Ireland  The CRO has issued its regular gazette. UK Claudia Chapman and Olivia Mooney of the FRC speak about the 2019 Stewardship Code consultation which closes on 29 March 2019. International The March 2019 IASB Update has been published and the work plan updated. The International Auditing & Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) recently released for public comment three interrelated exposure drafts that address quality management. The proposals bring important changes to the way professional accountancy firms are expected to manage quality—for audits, reviews and other assurance and related services engagements. Following extensive research by 16 accountancy bodies from across the world, commissioned research looking at the challenges and opportunities that SMPs and professional accountancy organizations (PAOs) face in this volatile and uncertain environment - the findings are presented in the January 2019 report 'The SMP of the future in a changing world.'    

Mar 21, 2019

Developments of interest this week are set out below.    Ireland  The CRO has issued its regular gazette. UK The FRC has this week responded to the publication of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s (BEIS) consultation. The FRC recently published an exposure draft of International Standard on Auditing (UK) 570 (Revised) Going Concern and issued a request for comments on the proposed changes. The Financial Reporting Lab would like to get views on the reporting topics that it should select for its projects over the next few years.  European The European Supervisory Authorities (ESAs) propose amendment to PRIIPs Key Information Document to clarify application to investment funds.    

Mar 14, 2019

Developments of interest this week are set out below.    Ireland  The CRO has issued its regular gazette. UK The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) proposes to increase the work required of auditors when assessing whether an entity is a going concern. The FRC has issued a position paper which sets out how Ethical and Auditing Standards will be developed to respond better to the needs of users of audited financial information, following the recent call for feedback. Stephen Haddrill (CEO) spoke at the FRC's Public Meeting this week about priority areas over 2019/20, including ensuring effective stewardship, raising audit quality and implementing the Kingman recommendations.   International The International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (IPSASB) has published its strategy and work plan for 2019 through 2023.            

Mar 06, 2019

Developments of interest this week are set out below.    Ireland  The Central Bank of Ireland has published further information relating to credit unions in a thematic review taking stock of the effect of restructuring in the sector.    The CRO has issued its regular gazette. UK The FRC and the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have issued letters for auditors and accountants to share information in case there is no deal agreed for leaving the EU by Friday 29 March 2019.Details include a decision tree regarding auditor authorisation and information about endorsement of IAS.Copies of the letters are available on the FRC’s website.   European The European Financial Reporting Advisory Group (EFRAG) and Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland are seeking comments on the application of discount rates to pension liabilities for accounting purposes.Views are sought from all interested parties and may be contributed using an on-line link available here. Accountancy Europe has issued an updated report setting out current thresholds for audit exemption applied across EU member states. The European Securities and Markets Authority has published responses received in response to its call for view on incorporating sustainability risks and related factors in MiFID II and the UCITS Directive/AIFMD.

Feb 28, 2019

Developments of interest this week are set out below.    Ireland                  The Central Bank of Ireland has published a paper dealing with challenges currently facing credit unions as they seek to meet developing needs of members.  The paper, “Business Model Strategy: Guidance for Credit Unions”, sets out guidance to help support credit unions in adopting a structured, risk-focused approach to business model strategy, while setting out the Central Bank’s key risk considerations and related supervisory expectations. The CRO has issued its regular gazette. European The European Financial Reporting Advisory Group (EFRAG) has announced the appointment of members to the European Lab Steering Group’s Project Task Force on climate-related reporting.  Activities in this area will commence with a conference on ‘Fostering Innovation in Corporate Reporting’ on 5 March 2019.  From January 2020, EU law will require listed companies to report their financial statements in the European Single Electronic Format (ESEF). This harmonised format makes reports machine-readable and will facilitate access, analysis and comparability of financial statements, serving to support investors in their investment decisions. Accountancy Europe has issued a factsheet giving an overview of the new requirements and including practical advice for preparers of financial statements and implications for statutory auditors. Accountancy Europe has issued a report setting out an update on the ‘state of play’ regarding implementation of EU audit requirements across the various member states. The report also analyses Member States’ decisions and shows outcomes regarding: providing non-audit services mandatory audit firm rotation organising public oversight The European Commission is consulting on proposed supplementary material to its non-binding guidelines on non-financial reporting, with specific focus on climate-related information.  Stakeholders are invited to comment on the material by 20 March 2019.   

Feb 21, 2019

Developments of interest this week are set out below.    Ireland                  Chartered Accountants Ireland has issued its comments on the updated views of the UK Competition and Markets Authority (‘CMA’) regarding steps that may be taken in order to enhance market choice, competition, quality and resilience, issued in December.  The letter of comment can be read here.  The CRO has issued its regular gazette. UK The UK government has announced terms of reference for the next stage in its review of audit quality and effectiveness.  Sir Donald Brydon will lead work to develop recommendations as to how audit can better address changing expectations and needs of users of audited financial statements, and better serve the public interest.  Sir Donald is expected to make a report to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy by the end of 2019.  . The UK government has also issued updated guidance on environmental reporting, relevant to companies and limited liability partnerships. European The European Supervisory Authorities have published final recommendations regarding amendments to rules relating to provision of information in relation to Packaged Retail and Insurance-based Investment Products (PRIIPs).  International The IASB has issued its February 2019 update, noting progress on current projects, which include consideration of how management’s commentary in annual reports can be enhanced, updates to the IFRS for SMEs and enhancements to IFRS 17, Insurance contracts. Future meetings will take each of these topics forward and determine appropriate changes and additions to current standards. The Canadian Accounting Standards Board has prepared a research paper to support IASB’s project to review and update IFRS 6 ‘Exploration for and evaluation of mineral resources’. The paper seeks to identify accounting challenges in the extractive sector. Amongst its findings, the paper notes that          -  the sector is experiencing pressures as a result of a weak commodity price              environment and pipeline capacity constraints          -  these pressures have cause a decrease of publicly traded entities in the                sector, as a result of mergers, acquisitions and bankruptcies. Nick Anderson, a member of IASB, has issued an article discussing reporting of corporate performance and how the quality of reported profits may be best understood. Questions he suggests are relevant include:           -   How much capital has been used to generate reported profits?           -   Does the net profit include gains or expenses that are unlikely to occur in                 future?           -   Are reported profits supported by cash flows?           -   What longer term risks does the entity fact, including environmental matters?         The article may be accessed here. 

Feb 14, 2019
Audit

As reported previously in Chartered Accountants News, the UK Competition and Markets Authority (‘CMA’) commenced in October 2018 a study of the UK statutory audit market, aimed at enhancing market choice, competition, quality and resilience.  The CMA issued for consultation an update paper in December 2018, which included a revised package of proposals, including: Regulatory scrutiny of auditor appointment and management with a view to securing audit committees’ accountability and independence; Mandatory joint audit with a view to breaking down barriers to non-Big Four firms; An operational split between the audit and advisory businesses of audit firms, aiming to address identified conflicts between the provision of audit and non-audit services while mitigating against some of the key negative consequences of alternatively introducing full ‘audit-only’ firms; and Peer review of audits prior to the opinion being signed. Chartered Accountants Ireland responded to the CMA consultation last week.  Some of the key points raised in our response include: Support for proposed measures, properly resourced, that would enhance the support provided by the audit regulator to the work of audit committees; The need for further detailed evidence based analysis and consultation on appropriate frameworks to support a proposal to implement either joint audit and/or market share cap measures; Appropriate revision to the auditor liability regime  should the mandatory joint audit proposal be implemented; The Institute does not support a full structural split of audit firms and considers that there is insufficient evidence based analysis available currently to support a proposal of an operational split; and Very significant concerns as to how peer review of audits by other firms in advance of signing audit opinions could be introduced in a workable/practicable given current corporate reporting timelines, including potentially increased risks to audit quality. The full Chartered Accountants Ireland submission is available on our website and can be accessed by clicking here.

Feb 07, 2019

Developments of interest this week are set out below.    Ireland                  The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation is reviewing the Limited Partnerships Act 1907. As part of the review process, the Department has issued a consultation paper and is seeking submissions from interested parties. The deadline for submissions is close of business on Friday, 1 March 2019.   The Central Bank has issued a Markets Update, following the announcement by the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) on 1 February of the agreement of ‘No-Deal Brexit MoUs’ with the FCA.  The CRO has issued its regular gazette. UK The FRC is consulting on possible improvements to reporting of factors that are important to a business’ generation of value and has issued a discussion paper setting out the case for change, together with ideas for expanding the information provided by companies.  Views are sought by 20 April 2019.   European The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has issued updated Questions and Answers (Q&As) giving guidance on practical questions regarding the European Markets Infrastructure Regulation.  ESMA has also released three Questions and Answers relating to the Prospectus Directive and Transparency Directive, clarifying application of certain provisions if the UK withdraws from the EU with no agreement in place. Accountancy Europe has issued a response  to the report relating to disclosure of climate related information, issued by the European Commission’ Technical Expert Group (TEG) on Sustainable Finance. The response notes that the value of the TEG’s initiative, but also sets out a number of matter that Accountancy Europe considers need to be addressed in progressing the subject. International The International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (IPSASB) has issued a new standard dealing with accounting for public benefits,   International Public Sector Accounting Standard 42, together with a related exposure draft.  The new material sets out guidance on accounting for social benefits, defined as payments to individuals and/or households to mitigate the effect of social risk (for example, state retirement benefits, disability benefits, income support and unemployment benefits) and gives direction on recognition and measurement of expenses and liabilities for social benefits and on making related disclosures to assist users evaluate their nature and financial effects.  The World Economic Forum has published a White Paper dealing with report on environmental, social and governance (ESG) matters - ‘Seeking Return on ESG: Advancing the Reporting Ecosystem to Unlock Impact for Business and Society’    

Feb 06, 2019

Developments of interest this week are set out below.    Ireland                  The CRO have issued their regular gazette. UK A new report from the Financial Reporting Lab of the UK Financial Reporting Council (FRC) considers how tech­nol­ogy might impact the pro­duc­tion, dis­tri­b­u­tion and con­sump­tion of corporate reporting. The FRC is consulting on a new Stewardship Code that sets substantially higher expectations for investor stewardship policy and practice. The FRC has issued FRED 70 Draft amendments to FRS 101 – 2018/19 cycle and FRED 71 Draft amendments to FRS 102 – Multi-employer defined benefit plans. European The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has updated its Questions and Answers (Q&As) regarding the implementation of the Central Securities Depository Regulation (CSDR). International An IFRS 17 podcast on the January 2019 IASB meeting is now available. Following the IASB's January 2019 meeting, an analysis of their work plan has been issued to see what changes have resulted from the meeting and other de­vel­op­ments since it was last revised in December.  

Jan 31, 2019