The Financial Accounting Standards Board intends to host a pair of public roundtable meetings in the fall to discuss issues related to private company accounting and reporting standards.

The first of the roundtables will take place on Tuesday, October 11, in Chicago, and the second will occur on Monday, October 17, in San Francisco. Among the topics to be discussed will be accounting and disclosure requirements for variable interest entities, interest rate swaps, and level 3 fair value measurements.

FASB has been expanding its outreach to private company accountants and other constituents in recent years, especially after the release of a Blue-Ribbon Panel report recommending that a different board set standards for private companies (see Panel Favors Separate Board for Private Companies). FASB’s parent organization, the Financial Accounting Foundation, has created a working group to study the recommendations in the report. In response, FASB held some roundtables last fall, and has dedicated staff members to do outreach to private company stakeholders. It has also added a member to its board from the private company world, Daryl Buck, president and CFO of the grocery retailer Reasor’s Holding Company.

In June, FASB opened a Web portal for private companies and nonprofits, and last month it began developing a “differential framework” to provide a short-term solution for creating distinct standards or exceptions for private companies, until the FAF makes its decision on a separate board (see FASB Developing Framework for private Companies).

“The board’s purpose in holding these public roundtables is to engage in a constructive dialogue about private company accounting and reporting issues on existing GAAP with a wide variety of stakeholders, including private companies, their CPA practitioners, and users of private company financial statements,” said FASB Chairman Leslie F. Seidman in a statement. “The board and staff found that the two roundtables we held last fall were valuable forums for hearing first hand from private company constituents about their concerns with existing GAAP. Those roundtables provided the impetus for our efforts to develop a differential reporting framework for private companies and our project to simplify goodwill impairment assessments.”

To register for the forums, visit www.fasb.org.

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