Javatpoint Logo
Javatpoint Logo

Accounting Standards Definition


Accounting aids in gathering data regarding a company's financial position and statements. It is regarded as a business language requiring consideration and adherence to a standard. There is enough proof that practical existence existed during the Vedic era. Price, scale, and merchant are all mentioned in the Rigveda. There are traces of evidence mentioning the existence of accounting books in the accountants' office, even in Kautilya's Arthashastra. The Accounting Standards (AS) provides the framework for this rule. Let's look at it.

.Accounting Standards (AS)

Basic policy papers are Accounting Standards (AS). Their main goal is to guarantee the financial statements' reliability, consistency, transparency, and comparability. They accomplish this by harmonizing a country's or economy's accounting standards and practices. As a result, if organizations adhere to these accounting rules, all transactions will be documented similarly. These Accounting Standards (AS) are published by a regulatory authority, an accounting body, or occasionally the government itself. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) is the organization in India that publishes the Indian Accounting Standards.

Accounting Standards primarily address four key accounting issues:

  1. Recognising financial events;
  2. Measuring financial transactions;
  3. Fairly presenting financial statements;
  4. Requiring corporations to provide information so stakeholders are not misled.

Accounting Standards Goals

Accounting is frequently referred to as the language of business because it informs others of the company's financial situation. The same syntax and grammar rules apply here in every language.

They are a nation's foundation for accounting and reporting norms and regulations. Let's look at the key goals behind developing these standards.

  • Improving the accuracy of financial accounts is the primary goal. Users may now rely on financial statements because they must be produced following standards. They are aware that breaking these rules could have detrimental effects on the businesses.
  • Next, we have comparability. Comparisons between and within firms will be possible if these standards are followed. This enables us to monitor the company's development and market position.
  • It also aims to offer a single set of accounting principles that covers the relevant disclosure requirements and the various financial transactions' valuation techniques.
  • The governing body in the accounting industry is the Accounting Standards. It ensures that the data offered to potential investors is accurate and not deceptive. Let's examine the advantages of AS.

Main Accounting standards types

Institutions, both domestically and outside, must comply with many accounting standards, including:

  • General Accepted Accounting Principles

GAAP is the main accounting rule set by public and private organizations in the United States. All publicly traded corporations are required to adhere to GAAP. Comparison of the financial standings of various businesses is also possible if GAAP is adhered properly. Regulatory agencies can efficiently oversee private enterprises thanks to GAAP standards, giving banks and investors the information they need to make wise business decisions.

Ten fundamental principles of GAAP serve as a roadmap for businesses' accounting procedures:

  • The consistency principle: The consistency principle calls on accountants to create all financial records using the same procedure. Additionally, it mandates the use of these techniques from one period to the next and the disclosure and justification of any standard changes.
  • The principle of regularity: The principle of regularity mandates adherence to GAAP norms and principles by all accountants employed by organizations that adhere to GAAP.
  • The sincerity principle: This rule emphasizes the importance of accurate financial information in reporting by requiring accountants to disclose all pertinent information, including transactions, gains, losses, debt, and noncash expenses, accurately.
  • The principle of permanent methods: Under the principle of permanent methods, firms must employ the same methodology throughout all phases of their accounting processes. This makes it possible to compare various eras and organizations.
  • The rule of caution:According to this rule, accountants must only include factual information in their financial reports. It highlights the significance of simply reporting reliable information and avoiding speculative material.
  • The principle of non-compensation: According to this rule, accountants must disclose both positive and negative information about the financial health of their client's businesses. It makes ensuring businesses disclose their debt rather than compensating it with assets.
  • The periodicity principle: The importance of these divisions is emphasized by the fact that accountants frequently disclose financial information at predetermined intervals throughout the year. It mandates that accountants keep their reports to a specific time frame and present their records quarterly and annually per accepted standards.
  • The principle of materiality: The principle of materiality requires institutions to disclose all financial information regarding revenue, assets, liabilities, equity, and expenses. It establishes requirements for proper disclosure.
  • The continuity concept: This principle establishes a benchmark for the estimation of corporate assets. When determining valuations, accountants must presume that a business will continue to operate.
  • The good faith or ultimate faith principle: This rule presumes that all parties involved in accounting procedures are truthful in their disclosures.

Benefits of Accounting Standards

1. Achieves Accounting Uniformity

When a corporation documents a transaction, it must, at all costs, abide by the norms and guidelines provided by accounting standards. To maintain uniformity throughout the accounting process, they employ different values for each organization and a standard structure for financial reporting. Since the reports are based on accounting standards that adhere to the presentation format without confusion, stakeholders can analyze them more easily. Additionally, they lessen the usage of alternative accounting practices.

2. Enhances Financial Statement Reliability

A corporation has numerous stakeholders who rely on the financial statements for information. The information given by these financial accounts serves as the foundation for many of these stakeholders' decisions. Additionally, some potential investors base their investment decisions on these financial statements.

Therefore, these statements must give a true and fair image of the company's financial status. This is guaranteed by the Accounting Standards (AS). They confirm the integrity and credibility of the claims.

3. Avoids Fraud and Accounting Fraud

All organizations must adhere to the accounting principles and procedures outlined in Accounting Standards (AS). For example, this prevents financial data from being manipulated by an entity's management. It is necessary and not discretionary to abide by these criteria. Therefore, it is challenging for management to present any financial information due to these standards falsely. Even committing fraud becomes more difficult for them as a result.

4. Helps Auditors

The accounting standards now provide a formal format for all accounting policies, rules, regulations, etc. These regulations must be followed. Therefore, an auditor can be confident that the financial statements are true and fair if he confirms that the policies have been correctly followed.

5. Comparability

Another important goal of accounting standards is this. Since every organization in the nation adheres to the same standards, their financial statements are somewhat comparable. Before making any decisions, the users of the financial statements can evaluate and compare the financial performances of various companies. Additionally, you can compare two statements from the same company from different years. Thanks to this, users can see the company's growth curve.

6. Determining Managerial Accountability

Accounting standards aid in measuring an entity's management performance. It can be used to assess the management's capacity to boost profitability, uphold the company's solvency, and perform other crucial financial obligations.

Management must make good accounting policy decisions as well. The user of these financial statements becomes confused due to ongoing changes in accounting policies. Additionally, the concepts of comparability and consistency are lost.

Accounting Standard Limitations

Additionally, Accounting Standards have some restrictions. The regulatory agencies are continually updating the standards to lessen these restrictions.

1. Rigid and unyielding

Making the financial statement inflexible means that nobody may change it to their liking because policies have already been defined and must be adhered to at all costs by the company. The format must be followed as it has already been specified. It is hence incapable of adapting.

2. Subvert The Principle

Due to lobbying or political pressure on accountable organizations, the accounting standard can occasionally be violated even with numerous restrictions. This is because either the government or a top official only wants to help out big, powerful firms or if they have a personal stake in it. Standards are compromised and cannot be entirely relied upon, which is a significant drawback.

3. Limited Scope

The laws and statutes must take precedence over accounting standards. They must be written within the parameters of the applicable legislation. This may restrict their ability to offer the appropriate policies.

4. It's Hard to Pick an Alternative

There are numerous methods for entering transactions in the books of account, making it challenging to choose which method to employ and which to exclude. This makes it even more challenging to access when performing qualitative analysis. Additionally, due to restrictions on the method of choice, the entity might be forced to switch to a secondary method of documenting transactions rather than using its preferred method, resulting in a loss of quality and efficiency.

5. High Time Consumption

Due to the extensive, time-consuming process that each note and schedule must undergo while complying with accounting standards, the process takes time. It frequently raises the likelihood of errors. With the repeated performance of the same work, the test becomes a need that becomes an obligation, and time-consuming. The task must be completed twice: once during execution and again during its verification of accuracy.

Who establishes accounting principles?

Many organizations establish different regional accounting standards. The main groups that determine international and American accounting standards are as follows:

  • FASB

The Financial Accounting Systems Board (FASB) is a non-profit, impartial organization primarily responsible for creating accounting standards for American businesses. The FASB creates guidelines based on GAAP principles relevant to for-profit and non-profit businesses. The FASB Accounting Standards Codification is an online archive of the organization's standards.

  • Foundation for IFRS

A non-profit organization with its headquarters in London is the International Financial Reporting Standards Foundation (IFRS). The IFRS Foundation's core objectives include creating, preserving, interpreting, and updating accounting standards for businesses worldwide. The IASB is another worldwide accounting organization that this foundation governs. The standards of the IFRS Foundation comprise IFRS standards, IAS standards, and various committees' interpretations of these standards.

  • IASB

A division of the IFRS Foundation, the IASB is an organization that sets accounting standards. They are a non-profit group that is unrelated to any one national government. The IASB's main objective is to provide universal accounting standards across international borders.

  • SEC

The U.S. government's Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) oversees the stock market. Its main responsibilities are to uphold financial regulations, safeguard investors, and stop market manipulation. The SEC, which delegated the responsibility of establishing accounting standards to the FASB, receives financial reports from all publicly traded corporations in the United States. The two organizations cooperate to ensure the public can access clear and consistent financial information.


The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) is the national professional organization for CPAs in the United States. The AICPA establishes standards for its members, including professional standards of behavior and auditing standards. Additionally, it offers CPAs support and credentials for their profession.

  • GASB

The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB), a commercial organization, develops accounting guidelines for American government organizations. It establishes standards based on GAAP principles, much like the FASB. GASB standards are used by local, state, and federal governments for financial reporting.

  • FAF

A private organization controls the FASB and the GASB called Financial Accounting Foundation (FAF). It supports these groups and collaborates with them to develop GAAP guidelines for both private businesses and governmental entities. The Governmental Accounting Standards Advisory Council (GASAC), which advises GASB, and the Financial Accounting Standards Advisory Council (FASAC), which offers advice to FASB, are two other branches of the FAF.


To sum up, accounting standards are essential rules that maintain uniformity and openness in financial reporting. The primary benefit of accounting standards is that they improve consistency and comparability in financial reporting, facilitating informed decision-making by investors and other stakeholders. Additionally, they assure users of financial statements that the data being presented is accurate and reliable. The drawback of accounting standards is that they can be difficult to execute and cost a lot of money, which can be difficult for small businesses. Additionally, accounting standards might be slow to adjust to new problems and not always keep up with evolving business practices. Nevertheless, accounting standards are crucial for preserving the accuracy of financial reporting and guaranteeing corporate accountability.

Next TopicAlgebra definition

Youtube For Videos Join Our Youtube Channel: Join Now


Help Others, Please Share

facebook twitter pinterest

Learn Latest Tutorials


Trending Technologies

B.Tech / MCA