Statements of Position

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Description

The proposed SOP contains four questions and answers (Qs & As) that provide guidance to responsible parties preparing financial forecasts as well as guidance to practitioners engaged to perform services in connection with such forecasts. The guidance in these Qs & As is summarized below. 1. Section 400.04 of the Guide requires a responsible party to have a reasonably objective basis to present a financial forecast. A responsible party has a reasonably objective basis if sufficiently objective assumptions can be developed for each key factor. 2. Because responsible parties should limit the length of their forecasts to periods for which they have a reasonably objective basis, a question arises as to what they should do when they believe it is necessary to include certain disclosures, in the forecast, about the effects of anticipated events and circumstances beyond the forecast period. Users of financial forecasts often need this information to evaluate the long-term consequences of their investment decisions. 3. In practice, financial forecasts have been presented for various periods of time, sometimes exceeding ten years. However, the Guide does not specify any fixed minimum or maximum time period to be covered by a financial forecast. The proposed guidance indicates that responsible parties should balance the information needs of users with their ability to estimate prospective results when evaluating the length of the forecast period. It also encourages presentation of financial forecasts that do not exceed three to five years by stating that it ordinarily would be difficult to establish that a reasonably objective basis exists to present longer forecasts. 4. The Guide indicates, in section 500.14, that an accountant engaged to compile or examine a financial forecast should consider whether a responsible party has a reasonably objective basis to present a financial forecast. It also clarifies that both the compilation procedures in section 600 and the examination procedures in section 700 of the Guide contemplate such a consideration.

ISBN

ed90-02-05t

Publication Date

1990

Relational Format

Book

Keywords

Financial statements -- Standards -- United States

Disciplines

Accounting | Taxation

Comments

Originally published by: American Institute of Certified Public Accountants; Copyright and permission to reprint held by: American Institute of Certified Public Accountants; Exposure draft (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants), 1990, Feb. 5

Proposed statement of position : questions and answers on reasonably objective basis and other issues affecting prospective financial statements (Proposed amendment to AICPA guide to prospective financial statements) ;Questions and answers on reasonably objective basis and other issues affecting prospective financial statements (Proposed amendment to AICPA guide to prospective financial statements)

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