Perspectives

Observations from a review of public filings by early adopters of the new revenue standard

This Heads Up provides insight into Deloitte’s review of the disclosures in the public filings of a group of companies that early adopted the FASB’s new revenue standard (ASC 606) in 2017. Entities adopting the standard beginning in 2018 may benefit from evaluating the disclosure trends we have observed as a result of this review.

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Introduction

As a result of the recognition and measurement requirements in the FASB’s new revenue standard (ASC 606), some companies will need to make wholesale changes to their financial statements. For other companies, the effect of the new requirements will be less significant. However, all entities will need to carefully consider the standard’s new and modified quantitative and qualitative disclosure guidance, which will significantly increase the amount of information they should disclose about revenue activities and related transactions. Accordingly, since the standard’s mandatory adoption date has either arrived or is rapidly approaching, companies are sharpening their focus on those disclosure requirements.

This Heads Up provides insight into our review of the disclosures in the public filings of a group of companies that early adopted the standard in 2017. Entities adopting the standard beginning in 2018 may benefit from evaluating the disclosure trends we have observed as a result of this review. For a comprehensive discussion of the new revenue standard, see Deloitte’s A Roadmap to Applying the New Revenue Recognition Standard.

Key Takeaways

  • The new revenue standard’s requirement to provide more comprehensive disclosures is likely to significantly affect an entity’s financial statements regardless of its effect on recognition patterns.
  • We observed diversity in the type and amount of information entities have disclosed. 
  • Many early adopters have chosen to add a separate and specific revenue footnote that contains the required disclosures. 
  • When providing disaggregated revenue disclosures, the majority of early adopters used three or fewer categories. The most commonly selected categories were (1) timing of transfer of goods and services (point in time vs. over time) and (2) product lines. 
  • Most early adopters elected multiple practical expedients related to their ASC 606 disclosures, most commonly those related to remaining performance obligations. 
  • To the extent that the accounting standard setters clarify guidance and regulators issue more comments, we expect entities to continue to refine the information they disclose.

 

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Volume 25, Issue 1 | January 22, 2018

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Heads Up newsletters, published as warranted, analyze important accounting developments, such as new FASB and IASB pronouncements or exposure drafts. Concise examples and answers to frequently asked questions assist readers in understanding and implementing the critical guidance.

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