• Why Investor Relations?

    For more than 40 years, the CFA Institute has advocated for efficient capital markets that are ethical, transparent, and provide investor protections. One of the Institute’s guiding principles states: “Investors need complete, accurate, timely and transparent information from securities issuers.”

  • Why InsuranceIR?

    Insurance companies face unique challenges when communicating with investors and InsuranceIR is uniquely suited to help with industry-specific support.

    The primary purpose of this blog is to offer specific ideas on how insurance companies can achieve that objective.

    The supporting pages offer information on InsuranceIR's capabilities and how firm principal Heather J. Wietzel can help your company improve your investor communications.

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  • Copyright 2012

Should IROs Care? – FASB’s newest proposal for insurance contract accounting

Discussion of changes to insurance contract accounting has been going on for over a decade. With its newest proposal, the Financial Accounting Standards Board is asking for comments on an updated proposal for standards that likely would be effective on January 1, 2018.

That sure does seem very far away.

I think that extended time frame – and the number of times this topic has come up and then been relegated to the back burner – has contributed to a lower profile for this most recent update. Continue reading

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(Wow) Accounting Standards from the IR Perspective

This past Monday, I had the privilege of attending the National Investor Relations Institute’s (NIRI) annual liaison meeting with Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) board members and staff. FASB and NIRI organize the session each year to offer investor relations practitioners a chance to “discuss standards from the investor communications perspective.”

The Session was Excellent

FASB allotted three hours for the liaison meeting, giving us plenty of time for the formal agenda as well as informal conversation and Q&A. About 15 people attended from FASB, including two board members and staff members with a variety of responsibilities. The FASB group shared updates on their initiatives and projects. Among the subjects covered were convergence to international accounting standards (IFRS), the disclosure framework project, revenue recognition, leases and financial instruments.

Those of us attending with NIRI gave feedback to FASB about the challenges we face communicating with investors. Our comments generally focused on how the accounting framework helps or hinders our ability to present historical and prospective information so that investors can make informed investment decisions or recommendations.

Specific to the Insurance Industry

We had the opportunity during the session to spend a few minutes learning more about the work FASB is doing in conjunction with the IASB on proposed changes to the accounting for insurance contracts. (See the Update on Insurance Contracts – a Joint Project of the IASB and FASB – for full details of the project.)

I believe the discussion of the insurance contracts project was positive. It provided an opportunity to highlight – from the investor relations perspective – some of the potential problems the proposed changes might create for insurance-sector investor communications.

The FASB group was very interested in our input and acknowledged the high volume of investor feedback they have received about the insurance contract proposal. They stressed how open they remain to feedback on the topic. Continue reading