The adoption of IFRS in Australia: The case of AASB 138 (IAS 38) intangible assets

Esther Cheung*, Elaine Evans, Sue Wright

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


AASB 138 Intangible Assets, adopted by reporting entities in Australia for annual reporting periods beginning on or after 1 January 2005, required derecognition of internally generated intangible assets. Prior to its adoption, the standard was widely expected to have a substantial impact on the reports of affected listed entities. On the basis of information available in the 2004-05 annual reports, this paper projects the expected effects of AASB 138 on reported intangible assets and on key financial measures. It compares these projected measures to the realised measures, reported under both Australian GAAP and AIFRS in the 2005-06 reports. While reported intangible assets and the debt to equity ratio were expected to change significantly as a result of AASB 138, the reported AIFRS results show a significant change in only the debt to equity ratio. The paper considers reasons why the pre-adoption expected changes did not eventuate, and also how the actual changes were reported to stakeholders in the management discussion sections of the annual reports. The conclusion draws implications regarding the transparency of communication in annual reports.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)248-256
Number of pages9
JournalAustralian Accounting Review
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2008


  • M41


Dive into the research topics of 'The adoption of IFRS in Australia: The case of AASB 138 (IAS 38) intangible assets'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this