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AITC revises accounting standards

The AITC is issuing a revised statement of best practice in a bid to harmonise accounting techniques within the industry.

It is updating its guidelines – published in 1995 – after identifying several areas of financial reporting which it says require modernisation to reflect developments in the investment trust industry.

It is seeking responses and suggestions from investment trust companies on the draft paper, which sets out how the AITC and its best practice working party believe performance fees and special dividend shares should be treated in company accounts.

The AITC wants to clarify in what circumstances expenses should be allocated between capital and revenue but warns that if some splitcap trusts were to adopt its recomm endations, the returns due to the different classes of share would be significantly affected.

It has also decided not to recommend that investment trusts produce illustrative financial statements as it believes they cannot cater for every item provided in a full set of accounts or for the circumstances of every trust.

Firms have until July 2 to respond to the new guidelines.

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