This paper discusses certain implications of capital‐markets‐based academic accounting research for the assessment of International Accounting Standards (IAS) by the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). The SEC's assessment criteria are comprehensiveness, high quality (comparability, transparency and full disclosure) and rigorous interpretation and application. Existing academic research has few implications for comprehensiveness, transparency and full disclosure, in part because no agreed‐upon metrics for measuring these constructs have been developed. Indirect implications for interpretation and application might be drawn from cross‐jurisdictional comparisons of income and cash flow volatility and value relevance, provided certain strong assumptions are met. Using Form 20‐F reconciliation data, research has documented extensive evidence of noncomparabilities between U.S. GAAP financial statements and statements prepared for the same firms under both various non‐U.S. GAAPs and IAS, and some evidence that the differences are value‐relevant.

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