Financial instruments and hedging

The FASB issued final guidance on 3 of its financial instruments projects: hedge accounting, recognition and measurement, and allowance for credit losses. Explore PwC's latest thinking on financial instruments.


Read the latest developments on accounting for financial instruments

  • The FASB’s new guidance on hedge accounting more closely aligns hedge accounting with companies’ risk management strategies, simplifies the application of hedge accounting, and increases transparency as to the scope and results of hedging programs.
  • It also amends the presentation and disclosure requirements and changes how companies assess effectiveness.
  • The amendments can be adopted immediately in any interim or annual period (including the current period).
  • The mandatory effective date for calendar year-end public companies is January 1, 2019. All others have an additional year to adopt.

Recognition and measurement

  • The FASB issued new guidance, ASU 2016-01, Financial Instruments–Overall (Subtopic 825-10): Recognition and Measurement of Financial Assets and Financial Liabilities that affects the accounting for equity investments, financial liabilities under the fair value option, and the presentation and disclosure requirements for financial instruments. The accounting for other financial instruments, such as loans, investments in debt securities, and financial liabilities is largely unchanged.
  • The guidance requires entities to measure equity investments at fair value that are not accounted for under the equity method and do not result in consolidation. Changes in fair value are recognized in income unless the investments qualify for the practicability exception.
  • The guidance is effective in Q1 2018 for calendar year-end public business entities and in 2019 for calendar year-end nonpublic entities. Certain provisions can be early adopted.
  • In general, the guidance will require modified retrospective application to all outstanding instruments, with a cumulative effect adjustment recorded to opening retained earnings as of the beginning of the first period in which the guidance becomes effective.
  • In June 2016, the FASB issued new guidance for the accounting for credit losses on financial assets within its scope (CECL), ASU 2016-13, Financial Instruments – Credit Losses (Topic 326): Measurement of Credit Losses on Financial Instruments.
  • For trade and other receivables, held-to-maturity debt securities, loans and other instruments, entities will be required to use the new current expected credit loss approach that will generally result in earlier recognition of allowances for losses.
  • For available-for-sale debt securities with unrealized losses, entities will measure credit losses in a manner similar to what is done today, except that the losses will be recognized as allowances rather than reductions in the amortized cost of the securities.
  • The guidance is effective as follows:

- Q1 2020 for calendar year-end public business entities that are SEC filers

- Q1 2021 for calendar year-end public business entities that are not SEC filers

- 2021 for calendar year-end nonpublic entities

Early application of the guidance will be permitted in 2019 for calendar year-end entities.

  • Given its scope, which includes trade and lease receivables, the new guidance will impact financial services and non-financial services entities

Simplifying the balance sheet classification of debt

  • The FASB issued an exposure draft ASU 2017-XX, Debt (Topic 470): Simplifying the Classification of Debt in a Classified Balance Sheet (Current versus Noncurrent) that proposes an overall classification principle for debt.
  • Under the proposal, debt would be classified as current or noncurrent based on the contractual rights of the lender and the borrower on the balance sheet date. A borrower would not be permitted to consider events that may occur after the balance sheet date when it determines the classification of its debt, with the exception of a debt covenant waiver that meets certain criteria.
  • Comments were due on May 5, 2017.
  • The FASB completed its redeliberations in September, and the final guidance is expected to be issued in the first quarter of 2018. The guidance will be effective for calendar year-end public business entities in 2020. Early adoption will be permitted.

Got 3 minutes? Watch our video on the new hedging standard

FASB issues significant amendments to hedge accounting. Immediate adoption available. Watch PwC’s Maria Constantinou discuss the new guidance now.


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New Hedging guidance can be adopted immediately

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