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The Impact of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS): Evidence from Canada


The Canadian transition to IFRS provides a valuable IFRS learning opportunity. The Canadian transition and implementation of IFRS provides a unique opportunity to examine the conversion of financial reporting from a similar set of financial reporting rules as U.S. GAAP in a similar economic and business environment. The implementation and adoption of IFRS is not a monolithic event. Our ability to comprehensively understand and assess IFRS requires transparent disclosures such as those mandated by IFRS 1 and disaggregation of the equity components to observe and measure the impact of IFRS as it pertains to discretionary management implementation choices, material reclassifications, and GAAP-to-GAAP differences. Comprehensive knowledge of IFRS 1, First Time Adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards is crucial to our ability to assess the transitory and future impact of IFRS. IFRS 1 sets the precedent for financial reporting under IFRS, overrides transitional provisions included in other IFRS, and prescribes detailed disclosures. This detailed “rules-based” standard permits discretionary management policy choices which have material impact on transitory reporting as well as future financial results.