WASHINGTON (5/13/11)--The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) on Thursday released new guidance on fair value measurement and disclosure requirements for International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs) and U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP). FASB in a release said that the requirements do not extend the use of fair value accounting, but provide guidance on how it should be applied where its use is already required or permitted by other standards within IFRSs or US GAAP. IFRS 13, Fair Value Measurement, will improve consistency and reduce complexity by providing, for the first time, a precise definition of fair value and a single source of fair value measurement and disclosure requirements for use across IFRSs, according to the release. FASB’s GAAP update clarifies portions of its existing guidance to better align with portions of IFRS, and “reflects FASB’s consideration of the different characteristics of public and non-public entities and the needs of users of their financial statements.” Many of the new disclosure requirements will not impact non-public entities. The release of this guidance follows more than five years of work related to disclosure requirements and fair value measurements. The harmonization of these requirements is a central part of the accounting regulators’ response to the financial crisis, and FASB Chairman Leslie Seidman said that the update “represents another positive step toward the shared goal of globally converged accounting standards. “Having a consistent meaning of the term ‘fair value’ will improve the consistency of financial information around the world,” she added. FASB and IASB also continue to work on a single standard on accounting for financial instruments and recently extended the timetable for finalizing the standard from the first to the second half of 2011. For more on the joint FASB/IASB release, use the resource link.