FASB ASC Topic 606: Revenue from Contracts with Customers Analysis and Impact on the Real Estate Industry
In 2014, IASB and FASB published a new revenue recognition standard that will upend the way revenue is recognized on financial statements filed with the SEC. The new standard, ASC 606 \u2014 Revenue from Contracts with Customers, is effective as of December 16, 2017 for all public US GAAP entities and effective for all IFRS entities as of January 1, 2018. All non-public US GAAP entities are required to implement the reporting standards for financial periods following December 16, 2018. The purpose of this new guidance is to shift from industry and transaction specific revenue recognition methods to a framework that enables financial statement users to understand how and when revenue is recognized. As an incoming associate within the audit industry, I decided to analyze the key differences between the new revenue recognition standard with the existing GAAP and IFRS standards. The following research explores the impact on various industries, particularly the real estate industry. ASC 606's impact will vary depending on the industry. In terms of real estate, the industry will experience a moderate impact. The new guidance will likely enable the earlier recognition of revenue in most instances, based on the five-step revenue recognition process laid out by the IASB and FASB. This publication also analyzes the 10-K's of three companies in the real estate industry; Kennedy Wilson Holdings Inc., CBRE Group Inc., and Digital Realty Trust, Inc. Through excerpts from the 10-K's of these companies, readers will gain insights into how real estate companies are preparing for the implementation of ASC 606. With this new revenue recognition standard, financial statement users will be able to better grasp the nature, timing, amount, and uncertainty of revenue recognition, thereby increasing transparency within the public accounting profession.