The objective of financial reporting is to provide financial information that is useful to investors in making decisions. It is thus important that such information is effectively communicated.


At present, valuable information is often hidden due to “boiler-plate” disclosures; also, financial information is often poorly presented. This makes it difficult and time-consuming for investors to identify the most useful information amid all the information disclosed.


The Principles of Disclosures project was initiated by IASB to identify disclosure issues and develop new or clarify existing disclosure principles. IASB issued a Discussion Paper (DP) in March 2017 to seek stakeholder views on these disclosure issues and approaches to address them.


On July 24, ISCA jointly held a roundtable with the Accounting Standards Council (ASC) to solicit feedback for this DP. Participants, including preparers, users, auditors, regulator and academia, had a lively discussion on existing disclosure issues and various approaches proposed in the DP.


An interesting comment centred on the “ability” of financial statements to tell a “complete story” – an approach that is ideal in theory but may not be feasible in practice due to resource constraints and the need for timely and effective communication of financial information. Participants’ feedback will be considered for inclusion in the Institute’s comment letter to IASB.