Accounting and reporting COVID-19 news we are following

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We're sharing with you a selection of COVID-19 accounting and reporting news we're following from the standard setters and regulators. Receive this news along with our insights on COVID-19 in your inbox each Friday by subscribing to PwC's Accounting weekly news.

June 2020


COVID-19-related rent concessions - an amendment to IFRS 16

On May 28, the IASB issued an amendment to its leases guidance to make it easier for lessees to account for COVID-19-related rent concessions.

April 2020


FASB issues Q&A on hedge accounting related to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic

On April 28, the FASB staff issued a Q&A document addressing the application of the cash flow hedge accounting guidance in ASC 815 to circumstances impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.


FASB proposes limited effective date delays of the revenue and leases standards

On April 21, the FASB issued an exposure draft that would defer the effective date of ASC 606, Revenue from Contracts with Customers, and ASC 842, Leases, for certain entities. Comments on the proposal are due by May 6.

GASB issues a toolbox to help governments navigate COVID-19 accounting and reporting issues

The GASB also published an emergency toolbox to help governments quickly identify the GASB standards applicable to issues they are facing in the current environment.


FASB issues Q&A on accounting for lease concessions related to COVID-19 pandemic

On April 10, the FASB staff issued a Q&A document addressing several questions related to the application of the lease accounting guidance (both ASC 842 and ASC 840) for lease concessions made as a result of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.


SEC statements emphasizing the importance of high-quality reporting

SEC Chief Accountant, Sagar Teotia, released a statement reiterating the importance of high-quality financial reporting for investors and stakeholders during this turbulent period. Chairman Jay Clayton and Division of Corporation Finance Director William Hinman also released a statement urging companies to provide as much information as practicable regarding their current financial and operating status, as well as their future operational and financial planning.

March 2020


Deferral of GASB standards

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board has added a project to consider deferring the effective dates of Statements and Implementation Guides effective for reporting periods beginning on or after June 15, 2018. This would include GASB Statement No. 84, Fiduciary Activities, and GASB Statement No. 87, Leases, among others. The GASB plans to issue an Exposure Draft of the effective date deferral in April, with a final standard expected in May 2020.

IASB releases paper on applying expected credit losses model in light of current economic uncertainty

On March 27, the IASB published a paper responding to questions regarding the application of the IFRS 9 expected credit losses model during this period of economic uncertainty arising from the coronavirus pandemic.

Tune in to our IFRS technical update webcast, airing on April 8, to hear a panel of PwC partners discuss the accounting implications of COVID-19. Register here.


SEC staff guidance for conducting annual meetings in light of COVID-19 concerns

On March 13, the SEC announced guidance regarding conducting annual meetings given COVID-19 concerns. According to the announcement, the SEC staff has received inquiries regarding compliance with federal proxy rules for upcoming annual meetings in light of health, transportation, and other logistical issues due to COVID-19.

Companies are required to hold annual meetings of security holders under state law. Some are also required to comply with federal rules, which require, among other things, delivery of proxy materials.

The guidance issued by the SEC staff addresses the following issues:

  • Changing the date, time, or location of an annual meeting: If a company has already mailed and filed its definitive proxy materials, the SEC staff will take the position that it can notify shareholders of a change in date, time, or location without mailing additional soliciting materials and amending its proxy materials provided certain steps are taken. These steps include issuing a press release announcing the change, filing the announcement on EDGAR, and taking all reasonable steps to notify intermediaries (e.g., proxy service provider) and other relevant market participants of the change.
  • Virtual shareholder meeting: The ability to conduct a virtual meeting is governed by state law, where permitted, and the issuer’s governing documents. If a company plans to conduct virtual or “hybrid” (where shareholders can opt for virtual access to a physical meeting) meetings, the SEC staff expects shareholders and other market participants to be notified in a timely manner. The staff also expects companies to explain the logistical details of the virtual or hybrid meeting, such as how to participate via remote access and how to vote. If a company has not yet mailed its definitive proxy materials, this information should be in the proxy statement or soliciting materials. If a company has already mailed and filed its materials, the company should follow the “change” guidance discussed above. For more information on virtual meetings, see PwC’s Virtual shareholder meetings—What boards need to know.
  • Presentation of shareholder proposals: SEC rules require shareholder proponents or their representative to appear and present their proposal at annual meetings. Given the possible difficulties with in-person presentation, the SEC staff has encouraged companies, to the extent feasible under state law, to provide shareholder proponents with alternate means of presenting their proposals, such as by phone. In addition, if a shareholder proponent is unable to attend the annual meeting due to hardships related to COVID-19, the staff would consider this “good cause” under Exchange Act Rule 14a-8(h) in the event the company attempts to use this as the basis for excluding a future proposal by the shareholder proponent.


SEC provides filing deadline relief for companies affected by COVID-19

On March 4, the SEC provided companies that are unable to meet filing deadlines due to COVID-19-related circumstances with an additional 45 days to submit certain disclosure reports (e.g., Forms 10-K, 10-Q, 20-F) that would otherwise have been due between March 1 and April 30, 2020. The relief is conditioned on a number of factors set out in the SEC’s order.

The SEC also provided guidance for how the relief will impact certain other securities-related areas, such as eligibility to use Forms S-3 and S-8 and the availability of the SEC’s existing late filing notification requirements (Exchange Act Rule 12b-25) for annual and quarterly reports that are subject to the 45 day extension but are not able to be filed by the extended due date. 

Also on March 4, the staff of the SEC’s Division of Investment Management published a statement extending and expanding certain prior no-action positions relating to in-person fund board voting requirements under the Investment Company Act of 1940 given that the coronavirus may impact in-person attendance. The positions described apply to fund board meetings until June 15, 2020.

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Heather Horn

Heather Horn

US Strategic Thought Leader, National Professional Services Group, PwC US

David Schmid

David Schmid

International Accounting Leader, National Professional Services Group, PwC US

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