Academic research and standard-setting: The case of other comprehensive income

Lynn L. Rees, Philip B. Shane

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)


SYNOPSIS: This paper links academic accounting research on comprehensive income reporting with the accounting standard-setting efforts of the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB). We begin by discussing the development of reporting other comprehensive income, and we identify a significant weakness in the FASB's Conceptual Framework, in the lack of a cohesive definition of any subcategory of comprehensive income, including earnings. We identify several attributes that could help allocate comprehensive income between net income, other comprehensive income, and other subcategories. We then review academic research related to remaining standard-setting issues, and identify gaps in academic research where hypotheses could be developed and tested. Our objectives are to (1) stimulate standard-setters to better conceptualize what is meant by other comprehensive income and to distinguish it from earnings, and (2) stimulate researchers to develop and test hypotheses that might help in that process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)789-915
Number of pages127
JournalAccounting Horizons
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Academic research and standard setting
  • Accounting policy
  • FASB conceptual framework
  • Other comprehensive income

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