Norwalk, Conn. (Aug. 15, 2002) -- The Financial Accounting Standards Board has unveiled a trio of proposed rules describing how companies can expense stock options.

Under the proposed FASB guidelines, companies will have a choice of three alternatives:

• The current method, allowing companies to expense options granted since the start of their respective fiscal years in which they made the decision to expense options.

• Companies would expense new options issued since the start of their fiscal year as well as any portion of previous option awards that are not invested

• A retroactive alternative to restate a company’s financials for three years in order to accurately reflect the options granted during that period in addition to any unvested options granted over that same time.

Following a 30-day comment period the new rules are expected to be put into effect no later than Dec. 15.

Over the past several weeks many of the nation’s top companies said they would begin expensing options, including General Electric and Coca-Cola. However technology giants Microsoft and Intel said they would not expense options.

--Electronic Accountant Newswire staff

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