We all know that championships are won during the off-season. It is this additional preparation that gives contenders an advantage months down the road. Thus, this column will conclude with an accounting concept every week for the next several installments or so. Whether you are just entering the program, a fourth-year student about to take on Intermediate Accounting, or about to finish up, the concepts to be presented should help enforce (or even set) the foundation for what you will see in the next couple of months.
As usual, though, I will begin with some interesting news bits from this past week.
The Sixth Sense?
Researchers from the UMass Medical School say they may have detected a gene that allows people to detect magnetic fields via the retina. Although research is early, they say that this extra sense would be mostly involved in sensing spatial orientation. Read more from the New York Times.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, et al (2011)
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that a case brought before them could not be tried as a class action lawsuit. A woman accusing Wal-Mart of sexual discrimination tried to file a class action lawsuit with about 1.5 million other women. The Court, however, threw the case out because of a lack of commonality. Justice Scalia, who delivered the opinion of the court, wrote “A regional pay disparity, for example, may be attributable to only a small set of Wal-Mart stores, and cannot by itself establish the uniform, store-by-store disparity upon which the plaintiffs’ theory of commonality depends…[R]espondents have identified no ‘specific employment practice’—much less one that ties all 1.5 million claims together.”
Commonality is “the rule requiring a plaintiff to show that ‘there are questions of law or fact common to the class’” and requires the plaintiff to “demonstrate that the class members ‘have suffered the same injury.’” The Supreme Court did not actually rule on the Title VII violation accusation (which actually caused some dissent amongst the justices because of the timing of the dismissal along which this decision sets a precedent), but, rather, it may have established what is necessary in order to file a class action lawsuit in the first place. The New York Times article may be found here.
Summer Review: SFAS No. 5
It is my intention to go over what I would consider the Ten Essential FASes this summer. SFAS No. 5 is a classic. This statement is known for its ambiguity because it is so overarching; however, it is because it covers so much—especially in principle—that makes it essential for understanding the nature of accounting. …..click here to read more