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Financialisation and the Conceptual Framework: An update

Ying Zhang and Jane Andrew

CRITICAL PERSPECTIVES ON ACCOUNTING, 2022, vol. 88, issue C

Abstract: As an extension of our prior work (Zhang & Andrew, 2014), this paper offers a critical theoretical reading of the most recent Conceptual Framework for Financial Reporting 2018 (hereafter called Framework 2018). We focus on key changes to the framework, analysing how they reinforce the financialisation of economies. Specifically, we discuss both the inclusion of stewardship as part of the purpose of financial reporting, and the new definition and recognition criteria for assets and liabilities. In these updates, Framework 2018 signals the International Accounting Standards Board’s (IASB) deepening commitment to the needs of a very narrow set of market actors despite its public interest charter. Our paper is an effort to interrogate some of these changes to the global regulatory architecture surrounding financial markets as it is progressively reconceptualised. We argue that recent updates in Framework 2018 are likely to support the production of a particular form of wealth that provides extraordinary benefits to a very small minority of people. To make this point, we contrast the IASB’s charter to act in the public interest with the most recent reports on global economic inequality (World Inequality Report, 2018). In doing so, we show that the connection between the conceptual framing of accounting, and the material experiences of people living in globalised, deregulated, liberalised, and financialised market economies requires much greater attention from both regulators and researchers. Doing so may allow us to explore the role accounting regulations play in the production of “regimes of inequality” (Piketty, 2020, p. 6).

Keywords: Financialization; Conceptual Framework; Inequality; Financial reporting (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:crpeac:v:88:y:2022:i:c:s1045235421000411

DOI: 10.1016/j.cpa.2021.102322

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