# Accounting of stock options. Accounting for. Employee Stock Options: Another Option. By. John E. McEnroe. Professor of Accountancy. And. Stanley C. Martens. Associate Professor.

## Accounting of stock options. The time has come to end the debate on accounting for stock options; the controversy has been going on far too long. In fact, the rule governing the reporting of.

Stock option expensing is a method of accounting for the value of share options, distributed as incentives to employees, within the profit and loss reporting of a listed business. On the income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement say that the loss from the exercise is accounted for by noting the difference between the market price if one exists of the shares and the cash received, the exercise price, for issuing those shares through the option.

Opponents of considering options an expense say that the real loss- due to the difference between the exercise price and the market price of the shares- is already stated on the cash flow statement. They would also point out that a separate loss in earnings per share due to the existence of more shares outstanding is also recorded on the balance sheet by noting the dilution of shares outstanding.

Simply, accounting for this on the income statement is believed to be redundant to them. Currently, the future appreciation of all shares issued are not accounted for on the income statement but can be noted upon examination of the balance sheet and cash flow statement.

The two methods to calculate the expense associated with stock options are the "intrinsic value" method and the "fair-value" method. Only the fair-value method is currently U. The intrinsic value method, associated with Accounting Principles Board Opinion 25 , calculates the intrinsic value as the difference between the market value of the stock and the exercise price of the option at the date the option is issued the "grant date".

Since companies generally issue stock options with exercise prices which are equal to the market price, the expense under this method is generally zero. The fair-value method uses either the price on a market or calculates the value using a mathematical formula such as the Black-Scholes model , which requires various assumptions as inputs.

This method is now required under accounting rules. In , another method was suggested: A method to eventually reconcile the grant date fair-value estimates with the eventual exercise price was also proposed. For transactions with employees and others providing similar services, the entity is required to measure the fair value of the equity instruments granted at the grant date.

In the absence of market prices, fair value is estimated using a valuation technique to estimate what the price of those equity instruments would have been on the measurement date in an arm's length transaction between knowledgeable, willing parties.

The standard does not specify which particular model should be used. As an alternative to stock warrants, companies may compensate their employees with stock appreciation rights SARs.

A single SAR is a right to be paid the amount by which the market price of one share of stock increases after a period of time. In this context, "appreciation" means the amount by which a stock price increases after a time period.

In contrast with compensation by stock warrants, an employee does not need to pay an outlay of cash or own the underlying stock to benefit from a SAR plan. In arrangements where the holder may select the date on which to redeem the SARs, this plan is a form of stock option. Opponents of the system note that the eventual value of the reward to the recipient of the option hence the eventual value of the incentive payment made by the company is difficult to account for in advance of its realisation.

The FASB has moved against "Opinion 25", which left it open to businesses to monetise options according to their 'intrinsic value', rather than their 'fair value'. The preference for fair value appears to be motivated by its voluntary adoption by several major listed businesses, and the need for a common standard of accounting.

Opposition to the adoption of expensing has provoked some challenges towards the unusual, independent status of the FASB as a non-governmental regulatory body, notably a motion put to the US Senate to strike down "statement ". From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. How to Value Employee Stock Options. Another Option on Options. Retrieved from " https: Views Read Edit View history.

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