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Double Accounting for Goodwill (Routledge New Works in Accounting History)

Double Accounting for Goodwill (Routledge New Works in Accounting History)

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Goodwill may be either purchased or internally generated. A historical review of accounting literature, including professional standards, relating to methods of accounting for purchased goodwill, forms an integral part of the book. The difficulty in accounting meaningfully for goodwill is compounded because, given its foundation in historical cost principles, accounting has been unable to present any information at all with regard to internally generated goodwill within the confines of the traditional Balance Sheet. This, in turn, has led to the evasion of the reality that the two forms of goodwill are inextricably merged.Trying to account satisfactorily for goodwill has been a prime example of R.R. Sterling’s ‘issues conceived in a way that they are in principle unresolvable’. The issue was accordingly redefined as to develop a method by which the current level of information relating to goodwill in the financial statements contained in a company’s Annual Report could be improved. The book seeks to identify a logically defensible method of accounting for goodwill that addresses that redefined problem. It builds upon the historical research undertaken, combined with a priori reasoning, to propose an additional financial statement which is a modification of nineteenth century ‘double accounting’ in a modern context. This statement, which goes far to solve the redefined problem, also furnishes information regarding the company’s market capitalization at balance date and is termed the Market Capitalization Statement (“MCS”).