On March 31, the Financial Accounting Standards Board issued an anticipated exposure draft that proposed significant changes in accounting for defined-benefit pension and health plans. As we explained a couple of columns back, it will recognize net plan assets and/or liabilities, accompanied by accumulated comprehensive income for deferred gains and losses that are currently off-balance sheet.Because of the large amounts and the generally bad news that this new accounting will declare more openly, FASB will be inundated with many negative comments from defenders of the status quo of bad accounting.
How do we know? Chalk it up to our decades of FASB-watching experience.
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