MORE OF THE FINANCIAL world is marching to the tune
of a single drummer. Canada is one of over 100 countries
that have converted or are in the process of adopting in-
ternational financial reporting standards. However, the
United States hasn’t joined in. Not yet, anyway.
It is expected that the Americans will fall into line,
but not without some coaching. Earlier this year, the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission announced that it
would issue a statement laying out its position regarding
global accounting standards.
No such debate lingers north of the 49th parallel. “IFRS
is becoming the global set of standards,” said Paul Parks,
senior technical manager with the American Institute of
Certified Public Managers in Roanoke, Va.
“In a lot of ways, it makes sense for Canada to adopt
these standards,” he added. “The transition makes sense.
IFRS is principles based, and Canadian standards have
always been straightforward.”
Less linear is the path that will be followed when Can-
ada converts to IFRS and its largest trading partner does
not. Most financial experts are preparing for a few bumps
but no major hurdles. One reason for the relative non-
chalance: the U.S. has already relaxed many of its cross-
border accounting restrictions.
“Companies from other countries using IFRS have been