On November 21, 2011, independent research firm, Gradient Analytics issued a report that questioned whether j2 Global appropriately treated the measurement of annual contacts with eFax customers as a change in estimate. Based on its examination of the j2 Global’s financial disclosures, applicable accounting rules, and limited feedback from the company, Gradient reported that “…the description of the underlying circumstances sounds more like a correction of an error in prior-period financial results.” If those adjustments are appropriately considered an accounting error rather than a change in estimate, a restatement of j2 Global’s 2010 financial reports may be warranted if such errors are considered material under accounting rules.
1. In your own words, briefly explain the difference between the treatment of an accounting error and a change in estimate and why it is important for this company.
2. Who is Sam E. Antar, the author of this blog, and why should an accountant recognize him?
3. Look at other articles in Mr. Antar’s blog and briefly summarize one that interests you.
Antar, Sam (2011). Should j2 Global Communications Restate its 2010 Financial Reports?, November 22. (Retrievable online at http://whitecollarfraud.blogspot.com/2011/11/should-j2-global-communications-restate.html)
Michalowisc, M. (2011) Video: Biggest Accounting Mistake #2. (Retrievable online at http://www.toiletpaperentrepreneur.com/videos?tubepress_page=3)
Biggest Accounting Mistake #2 from Obsidian on Vimeo.