Consultants draw blank on latest IAS 19 amendment

first_imgThe London-based International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) has released a narrowly focused amendment to its pensions accounting standard, International Accounting Standard 19 (IAS 19), Employee Benefits.The change, the board said in a press statement, will clarify how defined benefit (DB) plan sponsors must attribute service-related pension contributions from either employees or third parties.The new requirements will take effect from 1 July 2014, with early application permitted.But pensions accounting experts contacted by IPE have drawn a blank when asked which plans would be hit by the clarification. Simon Robinson, a consultant actuary with Aon Hewitt, said: “Their narrow scope amendment takes most – perhaps all – pension plans out of the scope of this change.  I have yet to find a UK plan, for example, that will be caught by this change.”Under the new requirements, where the contributions to a DB scheme depend on the number of years’ past service, sponsors must following paragraph 70 of IAS 19 and use the same attribution method as they used for the gross benefit.However, a practical expedient built into the amendment allows sponsors to account for the contributions as a reduction in service cost in the accounting period in which service is rendered if they are independent of past service.Robinson said he would struggle to value a plan in line with the new requirements.“My primary problem is that it takes a negative DC benefit (employee contributions) and tries to apply DB accounting to it.“The process of valuing one of these plans under this approach would almost certainly be a disproportionate effort compared with any arguable benefit in terms of theoretical correctness.”Separately, a leading practitioner close to the issue agreed it was difficult to see where, if at all, the new requirements would kick in.Where they do apply, the source added, applying them in practice could prove challenging, particularly where recordkeeping is incomplete.Another major firm of actuaries told IPE the amendments were not expected to change practice among UK plan sponsors.Elsewhere on IAS 19, newly published minutes of the November 2013 International Financial Reporting Standards Interpretations Committee (IFRS IC) meeting reveal that the extent of the committee’s continuing struggle to determine which troublesome DB plans to address with its revamped IFRIC D9 project.The D9 project is a bid by the committee to address the accounting mismatch that arises when the IAS 19 discounting model to a population of troublesome contribution-based promises.The mismatch is the result of applying either a high-quality corporate bond or government bond discount rate to member benefits that are calculated by reference to the returns on different pool of assets.The November minutes note: “The Interpretations Committee acknowledged that the scope of this project might be broader than it had envisaged, specifically depending on the definition of the variable components of the plans that fall within the agreed scope.”In other tentative decisions reached during the 12 November meeting, committee members agreed benefit promises with vesting conditions and demographic risks should be within the scope of the project.But benefit promises with salary risk look set to remain outside the project scope.As for where the dividing line will fall between variable and non-variable components, the majority of committee members said they would be unhappy with any more to limit the definition of a variable component to returns based on the actual return on any plan assets.Behind that concern was the fear that any such move would leave many economically similar plans outside the scope of any interpretation and accounted for under IAS 19’s projected unit credit approach.In an interview with IPE, interpretations committee member Andrew Watchman said: “The challenge facing IFRIC is to define the scope of this third category in a way that captures the plans for which the mismatch issue is most evident and problematic, without sweeping in many other plans for which the existing model seems to work well enough.”The November 2013 IFRIC Update warns: “The Interpretations Committee acknowledged that the scope of this project might be broader than it had envisaged, specifically depending on the definition of the variable components of the plans that fall within the agreed scope.”The report continues that the committee will “discuss at a future meeting how to proceed with this project”.last_img read more

England must copy rivals’ to avoid breaking Jofra Archer-Swann

first_imgGRAEME Swann has warned England could break Jofra Archer if they continue to use the rapid bowler so frequently.The World Cup-winning paceman made his Test debut at Lord’s, where he put on an exhibit of ferocious bowling – including the delivery which left Steve Smith concussed.Archer picked up five wickets in that Test before claiming six in an innings at Leeds. After bowling 27 overs and going wicketless in the first innings at Old Trafford, he returned with a six-wicket haul at the Oval.The reduction in his pace led to fears he was being over-used and Swann echoed those comments.The former Ashes winner told Yahoo Sport UK: “They’ve got the luxury of a world class all-rounder in Ben Stokes who can bowl 15 overs a day.“Your spinner, you have to get more out of your spinner, but I’m not having a go at Jack Leach. You can’t have Archer bowling the overs when a team is 300-4, that’s when the spinner should be tying down one end with seamers rotating in short bursts at the other.“In the second innings, because we’re not bowling a team out with spin, the seamers are bowling more. There’s a game in two days’ time. If you lose the toss and bowl it’s like… he’ll snap in half.“But he’s genuine world class. He’s an exciting player. No one could bowl the amount of overs he’s now bowling and remain 93-94 mph.”In total, Archer was called upon to bowl 156 overs in four Tests of this Ashes series.The strike bowler, breathtaking at his best, was called in to replace James Anderson after his first Test injury ruled him out of the series.England’s inability to bowl out Australia cheaply – they were foiled repeatedly by Smith – was one of the key reasons they entered the final Test with a series draw the best attainable result.Looking to the future, though, Swann believes linking up Archer with Anderson – alongside Stuart Broad – provides a mouthwatering proposition.“If we could get that, get another couple more years of Jimmy out,that is a magnificent bowling attack,” he added. “Jimmy can bowl 25 overs a day at the same pace, day in, day out.“If it swings, he doesn’t need to – he bowls ten overs and bowls a team out. You need two bowlers who can do that 20 odd overs. Broady can do that as well.“Archer definitely should not be asked to do that, yet he will be bowled into the ground and be a blunt force in two years time.“The Aussies eventually realised with Mitchell Johnson, he wasn’t a 30 overs a day man. When he bowled ten overs a day he was blisteringly quick and a match winner.“Jofra Archer, that spell at Lord’s when it was gloomy, it was magnificent, and they kept bowling him. You cannot do it and remain effective for long.“Steve Harmison was the last genuine fast strike bowler we had and he ended up being used 24, 25 overs a day. It blunted his effectiveness, I hope they don’t do that to Jofra Archer.” (Yahoo Sport UK)last_img read more

Syracuse bounces back from error-plagued 1st set in upset win over Notre Dame

first_img Published on November 2, 2019 at 12:10 am Contact Roshan: | @Roshan_f16 The serve dropped right between Aliah Bowllan and Ella Saada as the two fell to their knees, reacting too late to the ball. Both assumed the other would collect the straightforward serve, summing up an error-plagued first set for Syracuse. It was a first set that saw Syracuse (7-11, 4-7 Atlantic Coast) record nine attacking errors and three service errors in addition to allowing Notre Dame (15-6, 8-3 ACC) to score on five service aces. Highlighted by miscues, errors, and uncharacteristic mistakes, it looked as though SU had dug itself a hole it might not recover from. “(Our) team had that feeling of like ‘we’re just not even playing,’” assistant coach Derryk Williams said. “When you give a team (more than) 15 points without them having to do anything, it’s tough to have momentum.”But SU showed its resilience after a 25-14 loss in the first set. Ultimately, the Orange pulled off the reversal, following their first set woes with regained confidence that allowed them to win the next three consecutive sets and upset the conference’s second-best team. Early on, Notre Dame had an answer for Polina Shemanova, the Orange’s top outside hitter. When the ACC leader in kills per set and points per set rose for a kill, she was met by four hands on numerous occasions. When Shemanova and Saada tried to hit around the blockers, they suffered from an excess of attacking errors. And when SU finally got some attacking momentum going, it was shut down by poor defensive play.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textMidway through the first set, the Fighting Irish managed to collect a strong kill from Saada, clearly catching the Orange off-guard. To secure the point, a Notre Dame player exposed a gaping hole in Syracuse’s defense by gently setting the ball into the space on SU’s side. “The first set is always the set where you’re not fully into the game,” Shemanova said. “You’re still making some adjustments, so the first set is usually not the best for our team.”Even Bowllan wasn’t her usual acrobatic self — countless miscues on what appeared to be simple digs had head coach Leonid Yelin out of his seat, providing vocal instructions far more often than usual. Playing against a powerhouse side like Notre Dame, Shemanova said you almost want to win more. The idea of beating a strong side gave the Orange psychological willpower and allowed them to reverse their fate after the first set, Shemanova said. The key to the bounce back: the confidence and rhythm that SU gained in the second set. Shemanova recorded her typical cross-court kill on multiple occasions after the first set. Saada returned from a three-game slump, tying her career-high of 21 kills and setter Elena Karakasi recorded a career-tying high of 43 assists. Karakasi’s improved setting, compared to the first set, allowed her outside hitters to avoid blockers and rack up kills. And once the Orange offense regained their poise, the roles were reversed — in the second, third and fourth sets, Syracuse’s offensive firepower was a mismatch for the Fighting Irish defense.Crucial blocks lead the way in the Orange’s defensive turnaround, something the team has struggled with all season. Karakasi was vital in the success, with two big-time solo blocks and one block assist. After firing an ineffective kill early in the fourth set, she came right back on the same point and won the long rally with a flawless block that gave Syracuse an early lead. “Elena blocked I think the best I’ve ever seen her block,” Williams said. “She had three or four in the fourth set alone, so that was awesome.”The team finished the game with 74 digs, the second most of the season thus far. Bowllan had countless diving efforts, and though Yelin continued to make frequent trips out of his seat to give his players instructions, the Orange were able to handle the Fighting Irish’s strong offense. Though there were no adjustments to the defensive system itself, Yelin said, the Orange’s execution was far more crisp in the ensuing sets.“Once we started playing hard and doing things the right way, (the way) that we like to do it, I think they struggled to find ways to score,” Williams said. “Third set and fourth set they were hitting right at us. What we were doing was working.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Hydro still working on realignment of Highway 29

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – In a story published in the Journal of Commerce, BC Hydro has put forward preliminary design plans for the relocation and realignment of Highway 29, a key component of the Site C dam construction work.The 83 kilometre long project reservoir will be on average two to three times the current width of the river and will flood portions of the current highway.As a result the river valley flooding will require the realignment of about 30 kilometers of Highway 29 between Charlie Lake and Hudson’s Hope and Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure investigation and analysis is underway to finalize alignment, bridge, and roadwork design at six highway locations.- Advertisement -The definition design has resulted in a trio of preferred alignments at Lynx Creek, Farrell Creek and Halfway River segments, and in addition there are three corridors in which an alignment will be determined, pending further analysis at Bear Flat/Cache Creek, Farrell Creek East and Dry Creek. The flooding of the Bear Flat/Cache Creek segment will require the relocation of about eight and half kilometres of the current highway, and it would cross Cache Creek with a 200 metre bridge and a 240 metre causeway.About four kilometres of the highway will be flooded by the reservoir at the Halfway River segment, and the new route would follow the reservoir shoreline and cross over the Halfway with a 300 metre bridge and a 650 metre causeway.Advertisement At the Farrell Creek East segment, located within the preliminary stability and erosion reservoir impact lines, up to six kilometres will be relocated.   Construction of these segments is scheduled to begin in the summer of next year but not to be completed until the fall of 2021.In the meantime, the Ministry says a $7.9 million dollar road work project is underway to improve access to the dam construction site through rural roads immediately south of Fort St. John, and the contract for that work has been awarded to a Prince George Firm, A.L. Sims and Sons.last_img read more