Hot on the heels of the International Accounting Standards Board publishing its new standard in January, the Financial Accounting Standards Board met last week and determined that they would release the final guidance for lease accounting (Topic 842) on Thursday, February 25th. Trimble’s Manhattan team has been following discussions and revisions to the pronouncement since 2010 and, more closely, since 2013. What is interesting to us is this is FINALLY also a critical discussion which corporate real estate should be having with the C-suite, like no discussion that has taken place before. An article in CFO magazine describes this clearly:
By anticipating how new and existing leases will be classified and accounted for under the new standards, CFOs will be in a much better position to develop a strategy that minimizes any negative impact the lease accounting rule changes would otherwise have on financial statements.
While it will not be possible to renegotiate or mitigate the impacts from every lease, CEOs will rely on their CFOs to understand how the rules will affect the company and to offer proactive counsel on how the company should respond.
They will also have to rely on the CREs who have the pertinent data on the majority of their leases which are in real property, and their CIOs who will help them determine the best technology solution to comply with the regulations.
In subsequent blogs this week, we will be describing how Manhattan is the technology solution you will want to consider as you prepare to face the new rules going into effect in 2019 which will require you to also do comparative reporting for 2017-18. Manhattan’s real estate general ledger provides users a leading edge tool to more easily satisfy these requirements. More on Manhattan’s benefits in my Tuesday and Wednesday blogs as we prepare for this long awaited announcement. We have also compiled a FASB/IASB resource page for further reading at http://programinfo.trimble.com/FASB_IASB_Resources/.
Nancy J. Sanquist and Al Dente, CPA
 Moynihan, Sean. “How to Mitigate New Impact of Lease Accounting Rules,” CFO, April 1, 2015. http://ww2.cfo.com/corporate-real-estate/2015/04/mitigate-impact-new-lease-accounting-rules/