Under IFRS, remeasurement effects are recognized immediately in other comprehensive income and are not subsequently recorded within profit or loss, while US GAAP permits delayed recognition of gains and losses, with ultimate recognition in profit or loss.
Note: Gains and losses as referenced under US GAAP include (1) the differences between actual and expected return on assets and (2) changes in the measurement of the benefit obligation. Remeasurements under IFRS, as referenced, include (1) actuarial gains and losses, (2) the difference between actual return on assets and the amount included in the calculation of net interest cost (see SD 5.4), and (3) changes in the effect of the asset ceiling (see SD 5.13).
The guidance permits companies to either (1) record gains/losses in the period incurred within the statement of operations or (2) defer gains/losses through the use of the corridor approach (or any systematic method that results in faster recognition than the corridor approach).
Remeasurements are recognized immediately in OCI. There is no option to recognize gains/losses in profit or loss. In addition, the “corridor and spreading” option—which allows delayed recognition of gains and losses—is prohibited.
Whether gains/losses are recognized immediately or amortized in a systematic fashion, they are ultimately recorded within the statement of operations as components of net periodic benefit cost.
Once recognized in OCI, gains/losses are not subsequently recorded within profit or loss. The standard does not require that the amounts recognized in OCI be immediately taken to retained earnings; they may remain in a specific reserve or ‘other’ reserves within equity.
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