Accounting standards used in Australia

Karen Handley

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract


Purpose: To report on the accounting standards used by Australian firms to prepare General Purpose Financial Statements (GPFSs) and Special Purpose Financial Statements (SPFSs); accountants’ awareness of alternative simplified reporting frameworks; and typical users of financial reports. Originality: This exploratory survey coincided with the consultation period for a new Australian financial reporting standard for non-publicly accountable reporting entities. It examines the standards used in practice prior to this major change. Methodology: An online survey was completed by 241 Australian accountants. The instrument was pilot tested by a focus group of one of the Australian professional accounting bodies, then distributed electronically by all three professional bodies. Findings: 1. Unexpectedly low awareness of pending changes to financial reporting. 2. Inconsistent application of reporting standards required by law. 3. Different reporting practices for GPFSs and SPFSs. 4. Identification of a variety of types of financial report users, including a large number of government institutions. Research limitations: 1. A low response rate as a percentage of the email newsletters distributed. 2. A possible bias in respondents towards those who were interested in the topic. Practical implications: This research confirms anecdotal evidence that reporting standards are not consistently applied in Australia, and provides support for the concern that changes to reporting requirements (if followed) will place an additional burden on some entities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)32-33
Number of pages2
JournalExpo 2010 Higher Degree Research : book of abstracts
Publication statusPublished - 2010
EventHigher Degree Research Expo (6th : 2010) - Sydney
Duration: 19 Nov 201019 Nov 2010


  • accounting standards
  • users of financial reports


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