IASB publishes draft guidance on fair value measurement
The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) has published for public comment an exposure draft of draft guidance on fair value measurement.
If adopted, the proposals would replace fair value measurement guidance contained in individual International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) with a single, unified definition of fair value, as well as further authoritative guidance on the application of fair value measurement in inactive markets. The proposals deal with how fair value should be measured when it is already required by existing standards. They do not extend its use in any way.
To ensure consistency between IFRSs and U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), the proposals incorporate recent guidance on fair value measurement published by the U.S. Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and are consistent with a report of the IASB's Expert Advisory Panel published in October 2008 on fair value measurement in illiquid markets.
This project forms part of a long-term program by the IASB and the FASB to achieve convergence of IFRS and U.S. GAAP, as described in the boards' Memorandum of Understanding published in September 2008. It is also consistent with requests from G20 leaders to align fair value measurement in IFRSs and U.S. GAAP.
The IASB's starting point in developing the exposure draft was the equivalent U.S. standard, SFAS 157 Fair Value Measurements as amended. The proposed definition of fair value is identical to the definition in SFAS 157 and the supporting guidance is largely consistent with U.S. GAAP.
Introducing the exposure draft, Sir David Tweedie, Chairman of the IASB, said:
"This exposure draft is an important milestone in our response to the global financial crisis. It proposes clear and consistent guidance for the measurement of fair value and also addresses valuation issues arising in markets that have become inactive. The proposed guidance ensures consistency with US GAAP on issues related to fair value measurement and would achieve overall convergence with U.S. GAAP."
The proposals are set out in the exposure draft Fair Value Measurement which is open for comment until September 28, 2009. The exposure draft is available on the 'Open to Comment' section on www.iasb.org. 
The IASB will hold a Webcast to introduce the proposals in the exposure draft and will announce details on its Web site in due course.
You can read additional information about the IASB's response to the financial crisis. 
Printed copies of the exposure draft (ISBN 978-1-907026-10-2) will be available shortly, at £12 plus shipping, from:
IASC Foundation Publications Department
30 Cannon Street
London EC4M 6XH
Tel: +44 (0)20 7332 2730
Fax +44 (0)20 7332 2749