THE USEFULNESS OF ACCOUNTING STANDARDS IN THE PREPARATION OF FINANCIAL STATEMENTS
(A CASE STUDY OF GUINESS NIGERIA PLC)
The most common report from external use are the financial statement included in the annual report to shareholders (owners) and potential investors. These financial statements are prepared to confirm with “generally accepted accounting principles” such “principles” have evolved over time or have been made acceptable by decree from official rule making body.
Accounting principles result from an essentially political process. The government through the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) prescribes the methods of accounting profession through its board, Nigeria Accounting Standards Boards also issue statements of accounting standards as guide for prepares of financial statements.
In explanation of the above, the researcher examined the usefulness of the statement produced by the accounting profession’s organ (NASB) and how they are being complied with, its achievements and problems, hypothesis was also conducted.
Chapter five, discussed the findings of the study. It was discovered from the findings that accounting standards application in preparing financial statement have came to conclusion that it contributes numerously not to the company – Guinness (Nig) Plc, Enugu also on the nation’s economy as a whole.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1.2 Background Of The Study
1.3 Statement Of The Problem
1.4 Purpose of the study
1.5 Scope Of The Study
1.6 Statement of hypothesis
1.7 Scope and limitation of the study
1.8 Definition of terms
2.1 Review of related literature
2.2 Historical development of accounting standards
2.3 Users of accounting standards
2.4 The making of accounting standards
2.5 Application and compliance
2.6 Usefulness/benefits of standards
3.1 Research design and methodology
3.2 Population and sample size
3.3 Sources of data
3.4 Data collection techniques
4.1 Presentation, analysis and interpretation of data
4.2 Presentation and analysis of data
4.3 Interpretation of data
4.4 Test of hypothesis
5.1 Findings, conclusion and recommendation
There has been quite a lot of criticisms in recent years about accountants and the financial report which they prepare. A lot of people have had to question the validity of the profit measuring procedures applied in arriving at the profit measuring procedures applied in arriving at the profit disclosed in the published accounts.
Consequently, the profession has found it necessary to do a re-appraisal of the accepted procedures, which had found it necessary to do a re-appraisal of the accepted procedures, which had hitherto dominated accounting field in profit measurement.
Quite a member of proposals have made an attempt in reforming the methods generally in use. This has resulted in the coming together of different countries with a view to working out modalities for the standardization of these profit measuring and reporting procedures. This gave birth to the International Accounting Standards Committee (IASC) and local bodies like the Nigerian Accounting Standard Board (NASB) for Nigeria.
The International Accounting Standards (IAS) to be followed by all member countries of which Nigeria is one. Nigeria on the other hand produces additional Statements of Accounting Standards on Accounting Standards (SAS) in an attempt to make the International Standards meet local conditions.
The Nigerian Accounting Standard Board (NASB), which was inaugurated in September 1992, was charged with the following responsibilities.
a) To formulate and publish in the public interest accounting standards to be observed in the preparation of financial statements and to promote the general acceptance and adoption of such standards by prepares and users of financial statements.
b) To promote and sponsor legislation when necessary in order to ensure that standards developed and published by the board received nation-wide acceptance adoption and compliance.
c) To review from time to time the standards developed by the board in the light of change in the social, economic and political environment. since 1982 till date, the board has issued statements of accounting standards and two drafts at completion stages. The standards so far issued by the board are:-
SAS 1 - Disclosure of Accounting Policies
SAS 2 - Information to be disclosed in financial statements
SAS 3 - Accounting for property, plant, and equipment
SAS 4 - On stock
SAS 5 - On construction contracts
SAS 6 - On extra-ordinary items and prior year adjustment
SAS 7 - On foreign currency conversion and transactions
SAS 8 - On accounting for employees retirement benefits
SAS 9 - On accounting for depreciation
SAS 10 - Accounting by banks and non-bank financial institution
SAS 11 - On leases
SAS 1 - On accounting for deferred taxes
SAS 1 - On investment
SAS 14 - On petroleum profit
This work intends to analyze and examine usefulness of these standards in the financial statements with particular emphasis on Guinness Nig. Plc Enugu City.
1.2 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Guinness (Nig) Plc, is one of the biggest breweries in Nigeria today. It is a quoted company in the Nigerian Stock Exchange Commission (SEC). Guinness (Nig) Plc is an associated of Guinness overseas ltd, with headquarters at Dublin in England.
The journey of this company to Nigeria started in 1950 when the company was incorporated to import and distribute Guinness Stout from Dublin for sale in Nigeria. In 1962, the stout brewery in Ikeja Lagos, was commissioned. This station was the third of it kind in the world and the first outside the British Isles. A second brewery in Nigeria was commissioned in Benin and from 1982 other breweries stations was commissioned including in other states.
The company share capital is made up of 60% ordinary share owned by Nigerians and 40% ordinary shares owned by Guinness overseas limited. The Enugu Department which happens to be over study interest has a staff strength of about 10000 workers including both skilled and unskilled workers.
The accounts section of the brewery share of the total staff strength is about 200 workers. The accounting department which is charged with the responsibility of providing management with relevant financial information that enable her (management) make decisions, also maintains and keep proper books of accounts which are summaries of the daily financial activities of the company. Another major responsibility discovered within this accountant department is the preparation of the financial statements annually, which most be in compliance with the requirement of statements of Accounting Standards which external auditor must confirm and report on.
1.3 STATEMENT OF PROBLEMS
“Good accounting practice” means that the accounts must be prepared in compliance and in line with the Statements of Standards Accounting Practice (SSAP), International Accounting Standards (IAS), and Statement of Accounting Standard (SAS).
Thus, the burden of this investigation is to find “Good Accounting Practice” is being adhered to in the preparation of the financial statement and its benefits. The researcher’s aims at achieving this by conducting special investigation on the requirements of the accounting standard and then relates it to the activities of preparing financial statement at Guinness (Nig) Plc.
1.4 PURPOSE OF STUDY
The objective of accounting and financial statements is to provide reliable information about the economic resources and obligation of the business enterprises. This information is important in order to evaluate the company’s strengths and weaknesses. Its information indicates the various resource based available to export opportunities and make future progress.
In summary therefore, the account gives information about the economic resources and obligation of a business enterprises, which is needed to form a judgment about the ability of the business to survive, grow, adapt, and prosper a mid harsh economic conditions.
Another major purpose is that of providing information about the change in the net resources of the business organization, that is resources less obligations.
If these objectives of accounting are to be achieve then the financial statements must be understood by its readers or users. This would only be possible if, they are prepared in accordance with the generally accepted accounting principles. Those principles are derived from authoritative guidelines and standards.
Thus, the overall objective of research is to unveil the benefits or usefulness of the accounting standards in published financial statement oat Guinness (Nig) Plc.
Other objectives or purposes of the study includes:
a. The effects of the standards on the Nigerian economy
b. To determine the extent of compliance of the financial statement in the accounting standards.
c. The benefits or uses of the standards in other areas like students and lecturers.
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The accounting standards are developed to ensure a high degree of standardization in the published financial statements. They provide the necessary information about low accounting information should be prepared, presented on order to enhance the value of its contents and facilities thorough understanding. The significance of this study to the academic world cannot be over-emphasized as this topic is becoming more important to students of accounting and allied courses and they are usually subject of examinations. For example, many examination questions of Institute of Charted Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and other bodies like the Institute of Bankers are directly based on the contents of these standards and their applications in preparing financial statements.
This study is intended to be benefit to the “prepares and users” of accounting information who interpret and proper understanding of the financial statement and use the information to derive decision in making managerial decisions for the interest of the organization.
This study is also intended to highlight the significance of accounting standards in the Nigeria economy.
One most important significance of this study is revealed to the management of Guinness (Nig) Plc, Enugu City on the importance and economic effect of applying accounting standards in preparation of financial statements and also to act as guide to the accounting staff of the organization, its usefulness and compliance procedures. Infact, this work would be very valuable to all accounting officers in their task of preparing financial statements.
Finally, this study would also serve as reference literature to further researchers on usefulness of accounting standards.
1.6 STATEMENT OF HYPOTHESIS
Hypothesis according to O.K. Olakunori (1997) “is a statement which guides an investigation by providing a tentative solution to the research problems. After the research problem has been stated, the next thing to do in the research process is to give focus on direction to its solution.
Also, Orji .J. (1996) said that hypothesis is a proposition put forward as a basis for reasoning a supposition formulated from providing data and presented as temporary explanation of occurrence as in science in order to establish a basis for future research.
In order to analyse the usefulness of Accounting Standards in the preparation of financial statements of any firm, considering the validity and reliability of the information gathered the following hypothesis were formulated.
1. H0: Accounting standards have not played useful role in the
preparation of financial statement of the company.
HA: Accounting standards have played useful role in the preparation of financial statement of the company.
2. H0: Accounting standards have no benefit in the Nigerian economy.
HA: Accounting standards have benefits in the Nigerian economy.
3. H0: Accounting standards does not aid the users of financial
statements to understand the financial statement to get better understanding of it.
HA: Accounting standards aid the users of financial statements to understand the financial statement to get better understanding of it.
1.7 DEFINITIONS OF TERMS
Technical Jargons have been avoided as much as possible in this study. Some that could however not be avoided are defined here in the context they are used. Certain words used by the research are also defined to make for easier understanding of this work.
The researcher, underneath, explains the meaning of some works as used in the text and technical Jargons.
Usefulness: It is used with regards to its literal meaning. It is also researcher’s idea that usefulness to imply benefits or importance.
Standards: The term “financial statement” covers balance sheet, income statements and explanatory note identifies as being parts of financial statement.
Accounting polices: These are specifies accounting bases judged by business enterprises to be the most appropriate to their circumstances and adopted by the purpose of preparing their financial statements.
Extra-ordinary items: These are revenue and expenses items of an enterprise that are distinguished because they are both unusual in nature and infrequent in occurrence. An item that is identified as extra-ordinary is usually abnormal and unrelated to the ordinary activities of the enterprise.
Stock (inventories): These are items of value held for use or sale by an enterprise and usually comprise raw materials, supplies used in production, work-in-progress and finished goods.
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