AN OVERHAUL of hedge accounting rules has been welcomed by chartered accountants, but the ICAEW insists a solution to macro hedging should be the first priority.

Dr Nigel Sleigh-Johnson, head of the body's Financial Reporting Facility, warned a finalised model for general and macro hedging must be included in the standard to avoid revisiting it at a later date.

He called the International Accounting Standards Board's proposals "a major step in the right direction", but urged the body to alter its timetable to ensure macro hedging is incorporated.

Sleigh-Johnson says current rules are "far too prescriptive" and rely on a 'box-ticking' approach, claiming simplification will improve understanding of companies' financial performance and position.

Hedge accounting is the third phase of the IASB's project to replace the recognition and measurement of financial instruments standard.

The target date for completion is quarter two this year, but the effective date is yet to be confirmed.

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