With the coming and going of the April/May 2009 testing window, Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR) exam takers will now have to tackle SFAS 141(R) – Business Combinations and Consolidations starting on July 1, 2009. With FAS 141(R) many of the key terms have changed and it's a completely new way of consolidating financial statements.
Your CPA review materials may or may not cover this in great deal, but know this: it's very important that you understand the new consolidation method.
If your current CPA Exam study materials don't cover this change in-depth (as in devote 2-3 hours to the topic), then you should consider buying Yaeger CPA Review's recently released SFAS 141(R) lecture.
The 3.5 hour class comes on a USB thumb drive and includes a 56 page download of text, multiple choice questions, and explanations. It costs $50.
Current Yaeger students already have this lecture included in their 2009 FAR HomeStudy. Students of other courses may want to invest their time and money in this because if you skimp on studying SFAS 141(R) – it could spell disaster for you on exam day.
Phil Yaeger also discussed the change on the CPA Exam Insider podcast (don't laugh…I'm still working out the kinks…I'm a bean counter, not a radio guy.)
FAS 141(R) will be ripe to be tested as a simulation. Make SURE you know it.
Oh – and one more thing: you will need to know BOTH consolidation methods until they get all of the SFAS 141 questions purged from their test bank that contains thousands of questions. I'm sure that the AICPA will do it's best to get them removed, but don't be surprised if you see one that tests the old method.
(Just what you wanted to hear).
Get the FAS 141(R) update here…
Photo courtesy of Flickr user Royal Broil under this Creative Commons license.
I don't know why you think both consolidation methods should be studied. If they accidentally leave an old question in, I'm sure they'll throw it out while grading. I really don't think the AICPA would expect people to know both. Doesn't make much sense.
Please do whatever you think is best, Carla. I had a reason for posting what I did. -Jeff
Boo....hiss.....what was wrong with the old way of consolidating financial statements? Do you think I can petition the FASB to not release anything while I'm on the hook for FAR?
By the way...the tip on knowing both methods came from someone at the AICPA. Phil Yaeger meets with their examination team twice a year and he asked them if all of the old questions were going to be removed by the July/August window and the answer was "no" - candidates will need to know both consolidation methods until all of the old ones are purged from the test bank.
Every April I go from Maryland to New York to meet with the AICPA exam division. The purpose is to find out what is going on with the exam. I talk to the people who are involved with making up the exam. I bring back information to keep our students informed and up to date on what is going on with the exam. I ask questions and try to get answers to my questions. I cannot tell you whom I speak to, but I can tell you that I was told that for July they will try to remove all the questions on SFAS 141. The person I spoke to told me for the first month at least of the July/ August testing window, that we should have our students know 141 AND 141R. This person did not tell me that these questions would not be graded, as indicated in a comment above. In August of this year I will be meeting again with the examination department and report to Jeff any new information that I am allowed to share. I am trying to provide a service to another 71.com, and help CPA candidates. I cannot force you to believe me, but since I have been teaching since 1977, no student has ever accused me of giving out misinformation. Good luck to all! Sincerely, Phil Yaeger
Everyone should keep in mind the two methods are exactly the same when the parent owns 100% of the sub, the difference is when there is a minority interest. From the questions I've studied so far, it seems that a large majority of the consolidation questions are 100% ownership. In other words, there probably will not be very much additional information that we really need to focus on.
Banking on not getting questions where the parent owns less than 100% of the sub is not a good plan, Brandon. Pray that you don't get a sim on the topic.
I'm not banking on not getting questions with less than 100% ownership of the sub, I was just saying that if a MC pops up that asks about the purchase method there is a good chance it will be 100% ownership and then the methods are the same. If a simulation pops up for business combinations (wholly owned or not) then it should be covering the rules from 141R. One would think it is much easier to flush the test bank of simulations that are outdated, vs flushing the multiple choice questions.
Or, if you get a consolidation sim on the exam, pray it's a 100% ownership consolidation. Better yet, pray for something you know is in your wheelhouse to have on the exam.
I don't expect to pass the cpa exam with selective studying, but I try to study all subject matters and I make priority lists of subject matters that I should do more practices of MQs and simulations. It helps to know what would be new subject matter and knowing what to look for. Thanks anyways.
Jeff, I just ordered the Yaeger FAR Cram with the 2009 Wiley Book. Will the update be included in materials? Thanks for your help!
I'm sure that Phil discusses it - but not in the detail that would be required to "teach" you the material. The cram is a high level overview to refresh your memory and to help you brush up on a weak area. People should only use it if they've previously sat for a section and failed with a 71-74 or if they just completed a thorough review course and want to reinforce the concepts. Does this fit your situation?
I sat for FAR on May 1 and made a 70. I used Becker, but not in the capacity that I should have. So, I started restudying by going through the Becker material again. I did not watch the Becker lectures again; however, I did read through the chapters and work the MCQ. I ordered the YAEGAR CRAM to reinforce. It should arrive tomorrow. My rescheduled FAR exam is July 1. If I don't pass FAR by July 4, I will lose my audit credit. FAR is my last exam. Any advice? Thanks so much!!
Oh yeah, and I am studying with 2008 Becker, with online updates. so, i definitely don't have FAS 141R material.
I viewed my score on Thursday for the Reg section of the exam. It said I received a 79. I went on today to print that page to give to my employer, and it is saying no score found as if it was never posted. Any thoughts on what happened. This is my final section to pass and one section expires if I don't, so it is driving me nuts that I can no longer view it.
I took FAR for the first time and got a 74. I plan to retake the exam in the July/August testing window but did not know how much time will be enough before I can sit for it again. Is a month enough or do you think I would need more time to review? Also I used Becker materials - should I stay with it or does anyone recommend another review course that helped them get through FAR. Thanks for your help!
I used Bisk books and CD's with online updates and passed, If you got a 74 you probably should re study with Becker, look at your diagnostics (if your state releases them) the topics you were weak in make them a priority, as a last resort order the Yeager CRAM course and Wiley book to study in last couple weeks. As for time, I think since you got a 74 a month should be enough time.
I agree with Jeff and Phil Yeager. I used BISK books (the book had both FAS 141 and 141R sections in it) and took a review course for FAR and passed in the April/May testing window but throughout the course the Professor stressed that we pass in April/May window because come July/Aug window BOTH FAS 141 and 141R would be tested and he would be teaching BOTH in the next class.
Jeff- I have a question. I am taking FAR July 8 ( I just paid $35 to re-schedule it from July 1). If I get questions on SFAS 141 R, how will I know which method they want me to use?? The old way or the revised way?? Seriously, will they specify to use SFAS 141 R or plain 'ol SFAS?
I do go over it in the cram. If you have any questions, please call me at 301-340-3344.
I'll defer to Phil on this...I'll fwd it to him...
Thanks, Jeff. I hope he responds soon. I am scrambling to get the rest of my studying in!
To all students concerned about fasb 141 and 141r. When I was in New York in April 2009, I asked one of the individuals who is in the examination division. Will you have all the old questions out of the test bank by July 1st 2009 for fasb 141? He said that they will try their best. I asked him what should our students then do. He told me to tell them to study fasb 141 and fasb 141r. for at least July and August 2009. I am attending a meeting on August 4th 2009, and I will ask, can I tell our students that there are not more questions on fasb 141? I will keep another 71.com informed. Please watch the webast concerning the variable interest entity. That has been in effect since 2003, and most candidates may not be aware of it. It is testable now. Information about it is on the front page of another 71.com Sincerely, Phil Yaeger PS Good luck to everyone taking the exam in July and August 2009.
Kim: They will tell you if it is fasb141 or fasb 141R. Also I suggest you watch the webcast on variable interest entity that Jeff mentions on the front page of this blog. Good luck Phil Yaeger
for $50? One topic
SO when you say they are trying to get rid of the 141 questions for july, do you mean they will get rid of fas 141 questions and not include 141r questions? Or do you mean get rid of sfas 141 questions all together? If I have to know both and i am taking the exam on monday the 13th? is there anyway I can get the 50 course and take it online? or is the flash drive the only acceptable way of obtaining the material?
Clarification on the official AICPA site regarding new pronouncements, just in case hearsay isn't your thing:
Accounting and auditing pronouncements are eligible to be tested on the Uniform CPA Examination in the window beginning six months after a pronouncement?s effective date, unless early application is permitted.
When early application is permitted, the new pronouncement is eligible to be tested in the window beginning six months after the issuance date. In this case, both the old and new pronouncements may be tested until the old pronouncement is superseded.
For the federal taxation area, the Internal Revenue Code and federal tax regulations in effect six months before the beginning of the current window may be tested on the Uniform CPA Examination.
For all other materials covered in the Regulation and Business Environment and Concepts sections, material eligible to be tested includes federal laws in the window beginning six months after their effective date and uniform acts in the window beginning one year after their adoption by a simple majority of the jurisdictions.
I can't imagine the AICPA would allow any of the old questions to be relevant/tested as they have been preparing for this change for months.
Just my $0.02
Thank you for sharing, Jeff
If you're going to try to discredit one of my articles (again), you have to come with stronger stuff than "I can't imagine..."
Phil talked to the AICPA...and that is what they told him.
I think the issue is that the AICPA doesn't want to admit "human error" is even a possibility. Sorry, Jeff, didn't mean to make it seem like I was trying to discredit you - I think what you do is awesome and love that you're able to offer a wealth of information to exam candidates. If I appeared to attempt to discredit you in the past I sincerely apologize at that was certainly never my intention. I believe I've complimented you before for the work you do? That's not snark, that's a genuine thank you. You help people at a critical point in their lives with expertise and guidance, and if nothing else, sometimes candidates just need to know that they aren't alone and you offer them that sense - all professional affiliations aside, I think that is pretty awesome of you.
So as I said, we talked to the AICPA and they will not admit one way or another that "human error" is even likely, which is sort of understandable, especially considering the fact that they have not allowed a single rescore in quite some time.
I think the fact remains we still don't know. As Phil can attest to, one AICPA staff member will say one thing while another will say something completely different. The secrecy is frustrating to say the least because we're all just trying to present the correct information, right?
Anyway. Consider this me waving the white flag, Jeff, I respect you for what you do and always have, whether or not that has always come across.
I appreciate that, Adrienne. Truce accepted for sure.
I had no idea they were changing this. I am using 2008 Becker still, and am taking FAR for the 4th time on Friday. I got a 74 in May becuase I had no idea hoe to do the consolidation simulation. Obviously I spent a lot of time learning it now. I guess the best I can do is watch the videos since there isnt enough time to order the Yaeger update! I really wish I had checked this site sooner.
If I'm taking FAR in Oct. do you still think I will need to know the Old 141? Or should I just study 141R?
I would just be familiar with the old way...focus on 141R and be ready to do
a sim on it.
Thanks that will save me some precious study time!
I would just be familiar with the old way...focus on 141R and be ready to do
a sim on it.
Thanks that will save me some precious study time!
I AM TAKING FAR IN JANUARY 2010. DO I HAVE TO WORRY AT ALL ABOUT THE OLD METHOD STILL OR CAN I JUST FOCUS ON THE AQUISITION METHOD??