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Examiner tips for FR

05 February 2019

ACCA exam candidates using the word processing tool for the analysis questions are less likely to show their workings for calculating ratios than those sitting the paper-based exam, said the ACCA FR examiner’s December report. This needs to be ‘improved’ so marks are not lost!

In questions that tested the prep of financial statements some tended to put figures in individual cells and add the cells across for the answer, others did the entire working in one cell using a formula. The examiner stressed both approaches are acceptable, as markers will follow both methods.

In December’s section B candidates knowledge was weak in the following areas:

*Leases – IFRS 16 is a relatively new standard so candidates should ensure they are using an up-to-date text. Pay attention to when leases start. They won’t all begin on the furst day of the financial year.

*Research & development – use timelines to organise your information.

*Financial instruments – you have to go beyond superficial understanding here.

*Revenue recognition – expect more complex areas such as sale and leaseback.

Performance in the preparing a set of financial statements for a single entity were not as good in December as in previous sittings. The examiner was also hoping candidates would be better at answering questions about IFRS 16.

When it comes to interpretation questions based on the financial statements of groups candidates invariably do badly. The worrying trend of producing ratios without workings has also continued, particularly with the CBEs.

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