SYNOPSIS:

Current financial performance reporting has led to a focus on earnings per share and a proliferation of both non-GAAP measures and items reported in other comprehensive income. I examine characteristics of some of the more common non-GAAP earnings adjustments to propose a financial performance reporting model that consistently presents information with those characteristics separately. This reporting model focuses on distinguishing operating results from nonoperating results and within those categories presenting recurring amounts separately from nonrecurring amounts. I next explore potential implications for measurement. This analysis identifies conditions when the recognition of incremental unrealized gains or losses (UGLs) in income under a fair value measurement model improves relevance of reported information. The analysis suggests that UGLs provide most relevant information when there are no internal or external constraints affecting management's ability to sell an asset or transfer a liability before maturity or the end of its useful life. When assets/liabilities are constrained from being sold/transferred before maturity or the end of their useful lives, reported UGLs will reverse to zero over time, limiting relevance. This analysis supports measurement of financial assets and investment properties at fair value and provides a potential basis for measuring other assets and liabilities at historical cost.

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