Cautious start for international standards

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The introduction of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) will inevitably create some confusion. But private companies could do worse than grasping the nettle and adopting them in the short to mid-term, according to a PricewaterhouseCoopers technical partner.

For accounting periods beginning on/after 1 January 2005, the new standards are now obligatory for most of Europe's 7,000+ listed companies. The new IFRS and existing IAS guidelines cover all aspects of a company's consolidated accounts and represent a major shifting of goalposts in 90 jurisdictions in which they take effect.

Yet a December survey by PwC found that many of Europe's listed companies were not prepared for this attempt to create a universal financial "passport" to provide consistency and comparability between...

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