EC and US broker accounting convergence plan

A roadmap towards the harmonisation of US and international accounting standards has been agreed between America’s financial regulator and the European Union.

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The plan aims to eliminate the need for companies using IFRS to reconcile to US GAAP for SEC filings. This could happen as soon as 2007, but a deadline of no later than 2009 has been set.

EC internal market commissioner Charlie McCreevy said much work was still to do ‘but the bandwagon has now started’.

‘International accounting standard setters, preparers, issuers, auditors and regulators must now accelerate their efforts to seize this unique opportunity,’ he added.

However, SEC chairman William Donaldson was more cautious in his approach.

‘The ultimate success of IFRS will depend on many parties,’ he warned. ‘But I am glad that all parties are taking on the challenge. We need the contributions of all of them to reach the goal.’

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