Bridge over ocean
1 May 1966 Financial Analysts Journal Volume 22, Issue 3

Comparability and Flexibility: A Proposed Solution to the Uniformity Dilemma

  1. Ralph W. Estes
  2. Homer A. Brown

This article proposes a practical solution to the “comparability versus flexibility” dilemma in public financial reporting. Financial analysts require a minimum of comparability between corporate financial statements; but accountants insist that comparability and uniformity must be sacrificed for the flexibility needed to permit fair reporting and continued improvement of reporting practices. The authors propose that the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants select and promulgate a set of uniform minimum disclosure (UMD) requirements, which would be reported in addition to the “primary” financial information already being reported; thus making comparable information available without limiting the flexibility of financial reporting.

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