What is the new FASB accounting treatment for supply chain finance?
In September 2022, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) — the governing body for accounting standards in the United States — updated its standards to include a requirement for SCF disclosure on company financial statements. For most organizations, disclosure of an existing SCF program will be required for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2022.
FASB issued a summary of the information required for SCF disclosure in its update. Disclosure requirements include:
- The key terms of the program, including a description of payment terms (payment timing and basis for its determination)
- For the obligations that the buyer has confirmed as valid to the finance provider or intermediary:
- The amount outstanding that remains unpaid by the buyer as of the end of the annual period (the outstanding confirmed amount)
- A description of where those obligations are presented in the balance sheet
- A rollforward of those obligations during the annual period, including the amount of obligations confirmed and the amount of obligations subsequently paid
A similar requirement for SCF disclosure may also be forthcoming from the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB). The IASB is responsible for the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) adhered to by Europe and much of the rest of the developed world.
Why are the accounting treatment requirements for SCF changing?
Since its introduction into the market, finance and procurement professionals who have utilized supply chain finance (SCF) within their companies have wondered whether they should disclose it in the organization’s financial statements.
The option for companies to report their use of SCF on financial statements has always been on the table. Until recently, however, financial decision-makers could choose to forgo disclosure if they determined that such information was immaterial to the organization’s financial standing and outlook.
The new FASB supply chain finance accounting treatment standards provide much-needed clarity. On some level, the requirement to disclose speaks to SCF’s pervasiveness and maturity in the market, not to mention the need for greater shareholder transparency.
FASB explains the new accounting treatment for SCF reporting this way:
“[The new accounting treatment] responds to requests from investors for greater transparency around a buyer’s use of supplier finance programs. It enhances transparency by requiring new disclosures intended to help them better consider the effect of these programs on a company’s working capital, liquidity, and cash flows over time.”
Compliance with FASB accounting treatment standards
Companies that use SCF should contact their fintech or bank providers to determine whether they can furnish the information required for compliance. For example, Taulia has repeatedly affirmed the value of transparency to our customers, funders, and shareholders, which is why platform analytics gives companies the critical data they need to follow FASB guidance within seconds.
Access to up-to-date data from your SCF program is fundamental to ensuring you follow the new standard for SCF accounting treatment but not the final step. You will also want to set aside time in advance with those who help direct the preparation of your financial statements to double-check that you are providing all of the required information.
Your corporate tax advisors are your closest conduit to understanding the requirements of regulators, so they should be able to help you interpret and apply the information you receive from your SCF provider to comply with FASB reporting guidelines.