Departmental Bulletin Paper のれんの会計処理の国際比較と我が国の状況 : 米国の非公開会社におけるのれんの取扱いを中心に
The International Comparison Study on Accounting for Goodwill and Current Status in Japan(Special Issue Dedicated to Professor IMAKI Hidekazu,Professor CHUN Jae-Moon)

小澤, 義昭

The goodwill can be one of the largest items on a company's balance sheets, and it is currently amortized within 20 years in Japan. Under IFRS and U.S. GAAP, however, it is not amortized and is performed annual impairment testing. The accounting for goodwill is one of major differences among Japanese GAAP, IFRS and U.S. GAAP. Both sides are well-grounded and there has not been yet solved. Recently, the ASBJ publishes the Research Paper No.1 "Research on Amortization of Goodwill with a view to make a contribution to the global discussion regarding how goodwill should be accounted for". On the research paper, the ASBJ Staff founds that, at least, it is difficult to immediately conclude that the impairment-only approach is superior to the amortization and impairment approach. The majority of Japanese financial statement users expressed support for the amortization and impairment approach. I understand that many Japanese companies strongly support for the amortization of goodwill and the ASBJ indicated it is right theoretically, although I believe that non-amortization and annual impairment test approach is right theoretically. On the other hand, recent changes to the accounting for goodwill in the United States sought to simplify the process, but even this approach was considered by many to be cumbersome and unnecessary for U. S. private companies. As a result, FASB introduced new rules for the private companies. The new rules streamlines goodwill impairment testing and allows the private companies to elect to amortize goodwill over a period of 10 years. The standard setters and regulators recognize that complexity in accounting standards is leading to confusion among financial statements users while unnecessarily burdening financial statements preparers. Various initiatives aimed at simplifying accounting standards and financial reporting have been designed to reduce this complexity. Simplification efforts may benefit financial statement prepares. These changes will reduce costs for private companies, lead to more effective disclosures for public companies, and allow for a redeployment of finance resources to areas that can add value to organizations. Consequently, these changes are to reduce the complexity of the goodwill accounting. In Japan, I think that many public companies strongly support the amortization and impairment approach to reduce costs and avoid complexity. I am wondering whether users of financial statements really support the amortization of goodwill in Japan. Furthermore, I am wondering whether the amortization of goodwill is theoretically right or not. Overall, this study finds why the new rules were applied in the United States, and which approach is right theoretically.

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