Recent Question/Assignment

1. This assignment is to be submitted in accordance with assessment policy stated in the
Subject Outline and Student Handbook.
2. It is the responsibility of the student who is submitting the work, to ensure that the
work is in fact her/his own work. Incorporating another’s work or ideas into one’s own
work without appropriate acknowledgement is an academic offence. Students can
submit all assignments for plagiarism checking (self-check) on Blackboard before final
submission in the subject. For further details, please refer to the Subject Outline and
Student Handbook.
3. Maximum marks available: 20 marks.
4. Due date of submission: Week 11
5. Assignment should be of 3,000 words. Please use “word count” and include in report.
Important Note: Please submit Assignment through SafeAssign
Assignment theme:
Evaluate accounting quality, for a company of your choice, by assessing accounting policies
and estimates and prepare an investigative report on Managers’ Accounting and Reporting
Strategy Choice
Recommended steps/ navigation to complete the assignment project:
A) Ready:
Select a company and get approval of the company (Any company listed with
ASX) from your lecturer
B) Get set:
a) Read and gain in-depth understanding of the various normative and positive
theories of financial accounting from the text book and from other relevant & credible literature
b) Be aware of some of the limitations of the various theories of accounting
c) Appreciate that there is no single unified theory of accounting
d) Understand the various pressures and motivations that might have an effect on the methods of accounting selected by an organisation
e) Understand what is meant by ‘creative accounting’ and why it might occur
f) Understand Financial statement preparation process (from Business Activities to Financial Statements) and the various influencing factors from this document and from other credible sources.
g) In-depth knowledge on Accounting Framework.
C) Go:
a. Download Annual Reports (for 2 years at least) and explore
b. Assess accounting policies and estimates of your selected ASX listed company
i. Which accounting policies and estimates used by the firm?
ii. Are there any flexibilities of accounting policies and estimates used by the firm?
iii. Are these accounting policies and estimates used by their competitors?
iv. Show a comparison of accounting policies and estimates used by the firm with one of its rival company.
v. Do you agree with the policies and estimates?
vi. Is accounting strategy hiding or revealing
vii. Any Red Flags/questionable number in the accounting report?
viii. Which accounting positions capture them? Why? Explain
c. Critically evaluate accounting quality by assessing accounting policies and estimates
i. consider the various pressures, many of which are political in nature, that influence the accounting standard-setting environment
ii. consider the implications of organisations making particular accounting disclosures, whether voluntarily or as a result of a particular mandate
iii. understand the possible implications of an organisation making particular accounting choices and disclosures
d. Prepare an investigative report on the Managers’ Accounting Strategy and
Reporting Strategy choices on the basis of the above evaluation. The report should have following sections for minimum:
Section 1: Identify Key Accounting Policies
Key policies and estimates used to measure risks and critical factors for success must be identified.
Section 2: Assess Accounting Flexibility
Accounting information is more open to distortion if managers have
a high degree of flexibility in choosing policies and estimates.
Section 3: Evaluate Accounting StrategyFlexibility in accounting choices allows managers to strategically communicate economic information or distort performance.
Issues to consider include:
• Norms for accounting policies with industry peers
• Incentives for managers to manage earnings
• Changes in policies and estimates and the rationale for doing so
• Whether transactions are structured to achieve certain accounting objectives.
Section 4: Evaluate the Quality of Disclosure
Issues to consider include:
• Whether disclosures seem adequate
• Adequacy of footnotes to the financial statements
• Whether notes sufficiently explain and are consistent with
current performance
• Whether GAAP reflects or restricts the appropriate measurement of key measures of success
• Adequacy of segment disclosure.
Section 5: Identify Potential Red FlagsIssues that warrant gathering more information include:
• Unexplained changes in accounting, especially when performance is poor
• Unexplained transactions that boost profits
• Unusual increases in inventory or receivables in relation to sales revenue
• Increases in the gap between net income and cash flows or taxable income
• Use of R&D partnerships, SPEs or the sale of receivables to finance operations
• Unexpected large asset write-offs
• Large fourth-quarter adjustments
• Qualified audit opinions or auditor changes
• Related-party transactions.
Section 6: Compliant with the Conceptual Framework
D) Gone/ Done!!!
Submit the report in accordance with assessment policy stated in the Subject
Outline and Student Handbook.
Format of the Report and deliverables
1. You at least should have the following details:
a. Assignment Cover page
b. A table of contents, executive summary
c. A brief introduction or overview of what the report is about.
d. Body of the report with sections to answer the above sections and with appropriate section headings
e. Conclusion
f. List of references.
2. Diagrams and tables clearly labelled and explained.
3. Ensure all materials are correctly referenced. Plagiarism will be severely penalised.