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April 17, 2005

Arthur Levitt Joins CEASA in Unveiling Inaugural White Paper

The Center for Excellence in Accounting and Security Analysis (CEASA) released its inaugural white paper on accounting for employee stock options and stock-related claims.

Topics: Accounting

The Center for Excellence in Accounting and Security Analysis (CEASA) released its inaugural white paper on accounting for employee stock options and stock-related claims. Center codirectors Stephen Penman, the George O. May Professor of Accounting, and Trevor Harris, managing director at Morgan Stanley, were joined by CEASA’s advisory board chair Arthur Levitt to announce the paper at a luncheon event that attracted regulators, practitioners and business press.

Determining accurate accounting methods for employee stock options and other stock-related claims has long been a headache for companies, investors, analysts and regulators. In response, white paper coauthors Stephen Penman of Columbia Business School and James Ohlson of Arizona State University detail how Shareholder Value Accounting (SVA) can provide the most accurate, consistent and transparent means of accounting for the spectrum of contingent equity claims.

The key to SVA is that it provides accurate information on a company’s worth from the perspective of the shareholders, eliminating the inconsistencies and confusion found in other methods of accounting for performance-related claims. CEASA was formed in 2003 to provide an independent, objective voice for practical solutions in financial reporting and analysis. Columbia Business School’s long history of leadership in this area through faculty research and its strong relationships with the business community made the School an ideal home for the center, which is generously funded through grants from the GE Foundation, IBM and Morgan Stanley.