The Financial Accounting Standards Board will hold two public roundtable meetings today to discuss the board's proposal to improve accounting for postretirement benefit plans, including pensions.

The roundtables are open to the public and are meant to provide a forum for views and information relating to FASB's exposure draft, "Employers' Accounting for Defined Benefit Pension and Other Postretirement Plans," originally released on March 31.

The first of the two, three-hour long roundtables will begin at 9 a.m. The second will begin at 1 p.m. Both sessions will be Web cast live, and can be accessed at www.trz.cc/fasb/live.html.

This proposed statement would improve existing reporting for defined benefit plans by requiring an employer that is a business entity to recognize in its statement of financial position the over-funded or under-funded status of a defined benefit postretirement plan -- measured as the difference between the fair value of plan assets and the benefit obligation.

For a pension plan, the benefit obligation would be the projected benefit obligation; for any other post-retirement benefit plan, such as a retiree health care plan, the benefit obligation would be the accumulated postretirement benefit obligation.

Previously on WebCPA:

FASB Drafts Benefit Plan Rules; IFAC Tackles Accrual History (April 3, 2006)

FASB to Focus on Pension, Benefits Accounting (Nov. 11, 2005)

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