Technical articles

The last exam session for P2 Corporate Reporting was June 2018. This exam is no longer part of the ACCA Qualification syllabus.


IAS 21 – does it need amending?
This article examines the issues raised by IASB research that referred to a KASB study into whether IAS 21 needs amending.

This article considers the relevance of information provided by different measurement methods and explains the effect that they may have on the financial statements.

Giving investors what they need
This article looks at how reporting capital structure is challenging, but markets are keen for the information.

IFRS 13, Fair value measurement
IFRS 13 has required a significant amount of work by entities to simply understand the nature of the principles and concepts involved.

The definition and disclosure of capital
This article is structured in two parts – first, it considers what might be included as the capital of a company and, second, why this distinction is important for the analysis of financial information.

Revenue revisited
This two-part article considers the application of IFRS 15, Revenue from Contracts with Customers using the five-step model. 

Concepts of profit or loss and other comprehensive income
This article explains the current rules and the conceptual debate as to where in the statement of comprehensive income, profits and losses should be recognised – ie when should they be recognised in profit or loss and when in the other comprehensive income. Further, it explores the debate as to whether it is appropriate to recognise profits or losses twice.

Profit, loss and OCI
This article looks at what differentiates profit or loss from other comprehensive income and where items should be presented.

Impairment of financial assets
This article considers the International Accounting Standards Board’s proposals of new regulations for the impairment of financial assets. This is a current issue that is examinable in P2.

The Integrated Report framework
In 2013, the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) released a framework for integrated reporting. The framework establishes principles and concepts that govern the overall content of an integrated report.

When does debt seem to be equity?
The difference between debt and equity in an entity’s statement of financial position is not easy to distinguish for preparers of financial statements. Many financial instruments have both features with the result that this can lead to inconsistency of reporting. This article explains the distinction between debt and equity and the key factors that determine whether an instrument is classified as debt or equity.

Bin the clutter
The effects of clutter have typically come in for little consideration by the preparers of annual reports. However, we discover how the phenomenon is increasingly under discussion, with initiatives recently launched to combat it.

What is a financial instrument? – part 1
The first part of two articles considers the definition of accounting for financial instruments. It establishes how those issuing financial instruments need to classify these as either financial liabilities (for example, loans and bonds) or equity instruments (for example, ordinary shares).

What is a financial instrument? – part 2
The second part of this article considers accounting for financial assets, and includes a focus on debt instruments and equity instruments.

IFRS 9, Financial Instruments
This article focuses on the accounting requirements relating to financial assets and financial liabilities only.

Corporate reporting case studies
This article provides some advice on how to attempt the P2 case study questions, and features an illustrative question example based on a past exam question.

With IFRS-related questions featuring regularly in the P2 exam, this article provides a case study guide on how to approach such questions.

IASB's Conceptual Framework for Financial Reporting
This article takes a look at how the framework points the way for the development of new accounting standards.

How to account for property
While this article was written specifically for students in Hong Kong, it is also relevant to all F7 and P2 students and those studying for the DipIFR.

The industry question
Techniques to answer industry questions in the corporate reporting exam.

Reporting changes
An outline of the amendments to the UK financial reporting exams from June 2011.

Complex groups
An outline of the treatment of a past exam question on complex group accounting.

IFRS for SMEs (relevant to INT, SGP, MYS, HK)
The new International Financial Reporting Standard for small to medium-sized entities.

Convergence between IFRS and US GAAP
IFRS and US GAAP convergence is a topic which has been periodically examined in P2 exams.

Not-for-profit organisations – part 1
Although many of the principles of management and organisation apply to most business models, not-for-profit organisations have numerous features that distinguish them from the profit maximising organisations often assumed in conventional economic theory. This article explains some of these features.

Not-for-profit organisations – part 2
The second part of this article takes a specific and deeper look at charities, which are one of the more important types of not-for-profit organisations.

Impairment of goodwill
This article discusses and shows both ways of measuring goodwill following the acquisition of a subsidiary, and how each measurement of goodwill is subject to an impairment review.

Deferred tax
This article starts by considering aspects of deferred tax that are relevant to F7, before moving on to the more complicated situations that may be tested in P2.

Business combinations
This article tackles complex groups calculations, focusing on IFRS 3 (Revised).

Objective Business combinations – IFRS 3 (revised)
This first article in a two-part series provides an introduction to IFRS 3 and IAS 27, including piecemeal acquisitions and disposals.

Testing your knowledge of share-based payment transactions.

Study support videos

Groups with accounting standards
Lindsay Hoyle from Kaplan Financial focuses on the compulsory Question 1 about groups with accounting standards, looking at how to approach Part A (the technical requirement) and Parts B and C (the written requirements).
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here

Professional marks – the difference between a pass and a fail
Julie Corkish, education technical adviser at ACCA, provides some hints and tips around ensuring you get those professional marks which could mean the difference between a pass and a fail in your exam.

Advice for students retaking exams
This video is about turning your exam fail into a pass at your next attempt. It suggests ways to reflect on where you went wrong, how to draw up an effective study plan, and practising exam questions.

Exam technique

P2 – A guide to using the examiner’s reports
Guidance to help you if you are taking the P2 exam for the first time as this takes you through how to use the examiner’s reports as part of your revision phase as directed by the self-study guides. This document will help you to understand how you should be using the examiner’s reports to make the best use of them.

P2 – A guide to reflection for retake students
Guidance to help you if you are retaking the P2 exam as this takes you through the process of reflection using the examiner’s reports as directed in the retake guides. This document will help you to understand how you should be using the examiner’s reports to make the best use of them.

How to earn professional marks
This article explains what professional marks are, how they are awarded at the Professional level and to remind potential candidates how best to achieve these additional, and often crucial, marks.

P2 exam technique
The article focuses on issues of poor exam technique that often appear in the answers students submit for P2.

Passing the Professional level papers
This article outlines what candidates can do to ensure they are well prepared for Professional level exams.

Exam support resources

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