Accounting standards: Causing waves

If the grand objective of international accounting standards is to bring countries and their economies closer together, they have already succeeded in uniting Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore, in one respect at least. All three are suffering more or less equally ahead of the introduction next January of International Accounting Standard 39 (IAS 39), the standard that deals with the recognition and measurement of financial instruments.

This standard is famous – or notorious, depending on your po

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