Complete the 2 questions given below. A total of 50 marks are allocated to the questions below, which will then be converted to 15% in total.
All workings, when appropriate, must be shown to substantiate your answers.
Question 1 [35 marks]
The regulatory environment for financial reporting
You are a member of a large accounting firm which is responsible for preparing financial reports, including statements and notes to the accounts; and for advising staff in client firms who are responsible for preparing financial reports. The firm only deals with large Australian companies listed on the Australian Securities Exchange. One of your key tasks is to monitor the changes and developments in the financial reporting environment and summarise them in a regularly published newsletter.
Prepare a 2 page newsletter that identifies and summarises developments and changes in the financial reporting environment for the period January - March 2016, inclusive.
Detailed guidelines for completing this question:
1. Monitoring of changes and developments
This will involve regular monitoring of a number of sources over the required period. The sources should be varied in range, as you will need to identify and consider developments/changes relating to:
• Technical issues such as issue of new accounting standards, exposure drafts or other pronouncements or interpretations.
• Regulation and monitoring of financial reporting.
• Political influences or other potential developments (such as identification of any reporting failures) that could impact or may be of interest to staff (such as Enron or Parmalat failure). `Political` does not only mean action from politicians – it would also include lobbying/actions by other groups to promote their own interests – for example there may be articles about companies, or particular interest groups such as Group of 100, saying that if certain accounting standards are introduced this will disadvantage or have a negative impact.
You will need to consider both local (Australian) and international sources and developments. A section on `international` items/developments must be included in the newsletter.
2. Potential sources
Given the scope of the potential influences on financial reporting you will need to monitor a range of sources. Below is a list of sources that may be of interest, note that this list is not exhaustive, you should search for sources outside of these. You should not rely on any one type of source, but a range of sources from each category, i.e. do not just look at websites, also check journals, newspapers etc. Examples of possible information sources include:
(i) Websites such as those of:
• Australian Accounting Standards Board
• Financial Reporting Council
• Australian Securities and Investment Commission
• Australian Securities Exchange
• International Federation of Accountants
• Chartered Accountants in Australia and New Zealand
• CPA Australia
• International Accounting Standards Board
• Financial Accounting Standards Board
• Websites of large accounting firms.
(ii) Professional publications:
• In the Black (CPA)
• Acuity (CAANZ)
The restriction of a 2 page newsletter means that you need to use your own judgement as to whether to include information about specific changes and developments and how much information to include. It is not intended that you provide complete details of changes/developments (although you may consider in particular cases that more detail is needed). The purpose of the newsletter is to alert staff to changes and developments that may impact on their work and provide enough information about these changes/developments to satisfy the following:
• For staff (the intended audience) to understand the nature of the development/change and its potential impact (so staff can decide whether they need to investigate further given the nature of their own work),
• Provide sufficient information for staff to be able to obtain further information on the development/change if they wish to,
• The newsletter should where possible be in your own words with sources adequately referenced using the appropriate referencing system.
• Some examples of significant items to be considered include:
• Revised or reissued accounting standards or interpretation (both national and international),
• ASIC reviews on financial reporting,
• New ASX disclosures for listed companies.
Given the target audience, it would be assumed that they have a working knowledge of common terms and abbreviations (such as AASB, FASB) so abbreviations may be used. Don`t be afraid to be creative. The effectiveness of a newsletter is impacted by how interesting the readers find it.
What not to consider?
You need to take care that the developments and the changes considered and included in the newsletter are relevant to the objective, in particular the issues/developments that directly relate to the preparation of financial reports for large companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange. The newsletter SHOULD NOT consider areas only INDIRECTLY related to the preparation of financial reports such as (and this is not an exhaustive list):
• Other disclosures by listed companies such as:
o Industry disclosures required by peak organisations,
o Voluntary disclosures in the area of corporate social responsibility,
o Voluntary Environmental disclosures.
The newsletter should be in the following format:
• The top of the newsletter must include the title (you need to decide on what to call your newsletter) and details of the period the newsletter is considering.
• The newsletter should not read as one continuous `essay`. It must include headings and sub-headings that assist in identifying the nature of changes/developments and help to guide the reader, and also enable the reader to distinguish between items of interest and the relative importance of changes.
• You must refer the reader to specific sources so that they are able to obtain more detailed information of the development/change.
• The newsletter must be printed in minimum font size of 11 points (You may wish to use larger fonts etc for headings etc). You may wish to set your newsletter out using columns but this is optional. Apart from minimum font size, there are no specific requirements in relation to line spacing, margins etc. However, you should note that simply reducing line spacings, margins to `fit more in` may impact on the presentation and effectiveness of the newsletter.
• There is no specific `word limit`. The newsletter must be no longer than 2 pages. In cases where the newsletter exceeds the 2 page limit, only the first 2 pages will be marked.
Do not attach actual articles/printouts of web sources etc to your assessment. You are only required to include details of these in the bibliography.
5. Bibliography and referencing
This assessment must include a bibliography rather than a reference list (this should not be part of your newsletter and to be given on a separate page). A bibliography includes all materials used in the preparation of your assignment, not just those referenced within the paper. The reason a bibliography is required (rather than a reference list) is that this will provide an insight into the range and regularity of your monitoring activities (not just those specifically referenced within your `paper`) which is part of the criteria for assessment. It is expected that the bibliography will be quite long. The bibliography needs to include specifics of what you have actually accessed and read that is related to the area - not just a general link to a website or newspaper etc. Therefore if you use a source such as the AASB website, please reference every article that you read separately. Assessments without a bibliography will not be accepted or marked.
When citing electronic sources, please include the date accessed. If you are unsure how to cite electronic sources check the referencing guides that are available from the library or online at the student services site. APA referencing style should be used for all citing format.
Please be reminded that plagiarism is regarded as a serious issue within the University system with severe consequences for students who have been found to have deliberately plagiarised, the minimum penalty being zero for the assignment. You should ensure that they are familiar with the plagiarism policy and referencing requirements before commencing assessment.
Question 2 [15 marks]
Preparation of a statement of financial position and statement of profit or loss and other comprehensive income
The summarised trial balance of Smarties Ltd, a snack food manufacturing company, includes the following accounts at 30 June 2015:
DR ($000) CR ($000)
Sales revenue 1,106
Interest income 8
Gain on sale of office equipment 10
Cost of goods sold 524
Administration expenses 143
Administrative salaries 30
Advertising expense 22
Annual leave 8
Depreciation - administration office equipment 28
Depreciation - sales equipment 40
Distribution costs 70
Doubtful debts 6
Goodwill impairment loss 5
Interest expense 27
Long service leave 3
Rent - administration office 7
Rent - sales showroom 8
Sales staff salaries 95
Shipping supplies 10
Sundry expenses 17
Proceeds from insurance claim 20
Income tax expense 39
Cash on hand 12
Accounts receivable 118
Allowance for doubtful debts 11
Investment property 130
Deferred tax assets 18
Patent (at cost) 200
Accumulated impairment losses - goodwill 25
Administration office equipment 172
Accumulated depreciation - office equipment 83
Sales equipment 300
Accumulated depreciation - sales equipment 120
Accounts payable 114
Bank overdraft 13
Current tax liability 37
Bank loan 175
Provision for annual leave 12
Provision for long service leave 7
Deferred tax liabilities 22
Share capital (ordinary fully paid) 400
Retained earnings at 1 July 2014 36
General reserve 25
• All assets other than accounts receivable, cash on hand and inventories are non-current. All liabilities other than accounts payable, bank overdraft, provisions listed below and current tax liability are non-current.
• There was no movement in the general reserve during the year.
• Provision for annual leave includes $7,000 payable within 1 year. Of the $8,000 annual leave expense recognised, $6,000 relates to the sales staff, and $2,000 relates to the administrative staff.
• Provision for long service leave includes $2,000 payable within 1 year. Of the $3,000 long service leave expense recognised, $2,000 relates to the sales staff, and $1,000 relates to the administrative staff.
• Smarties Ltd uses the single statement format for the statement of profit or loss and other comprehensive income and presents an analysis of expenses by function on the statement.
Prepare the statement of financial position and statement of profit or loss and other comprehensive income of Smarties Ltd for the year ended 30 June 2015 in accordance with AASB 101, using the line items that a listed company is likely to use. When preparing the statement of financial position, use the minimum line items specified in AASB 101 when reporting the assets and liabilities. Sub-classifications of these minimum line items should not be shown on the face of the statement. Show all workings. Notes and comparative figures are not required.
Question 2 Allocated marks
Minimum line items provided appropriately 10
Explanations / workings provided appropriately 2
The purpose of this assignment is to help you further develop some of the skills and knowledge required and valued by the accountancy profession. The task that you will be required to undertake is similar to the tasks required of a professional accountant working within the financial reporting field. Accounting professionals need to ensure they are aware of current developments and that their knowledge is `up to date`. They need to be able to identify changes that have occurred that may impact on their work and to know where they can obtain information about these changes. In this assignment you are asked to provide a summary of recent developments relating to financial reporting.
As such this assignment aims to:
• Develop the student`s ability to identify and source changes to financial reporting requirements so as to update professional knowledge required for practice;
• Assist students acquire an awareness of current developments and changes (both locally and internationally) that may impact on current and future financial reporting rules and regulations;
• Develop the student`s ability to provide written material appropriate to the accountancy profession;
• Help students appreciate the limitations of the currency of knowledge in a technical financial reporting area;
• Allow students to understand the relationships between technical issues and community attitude to financial reporting.
This assignment will assess your ability to:
• prepare basic financial statements for reporting entities; and
• discuss critically and comprehensively the statutory and professional requirements upon which published financial statements are based.