Concepts – Measurement Attributes

Project Objective:

The FASAB’s projects to reexamine and expand its conceptual framework have included since inception a project on measurement attributes (i.e., the aspect of an item that is measured, such as, for example, its historical cost or its replacement cost) for reporting purposes. This project follows logically from Statement of Federal Financial Accounting Concepts 5, Definitions of Elements and Basic Recognition Criteria for Accrual-Basis Financial Statements, which states that an item’s being measurable is a criterion for recognition in the financial statements but does not address measurement attributes or measurement methods.

As is true of other components of an expanded conceptual framework, this project is expected to result in a concepts statement for the future guidance of, primarily, the Board itself. The statement may include definitions and a discussion of the features of different measurement attributes as well as other concepts that should assist the Board in developing future standards. The statement also should assist preparers and auditors in selecting appropriate measurement attributes in the absence of FASAB standards, and it should help users understand the import of the selection of different measurement attributes. However, the concepts statement would not set standards. For example, although it might discuss the advantages and disadvantages of particular attributes, it would neither require nor recommend the selection of particular attributes in specific circumstances, nor would it amend or supersede existing standards for the selection of measurement attributes or other measurement concepts. This project was first on the Board’s agenda in October 2007.