Hierarchy Of GAAP


DEFINITION of 'Hierarchy Of GAAP'

An outline for determining the most appropriate sources for obtaining guidance on U.S. generally accepted accounting principles. The applicable hierarchy of GAAP that applies to nongovernmental entities is laid out by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) Statement 162, issued in May 2008.


At the top of the GAAP hierarchy are FASB statements and American Institute of Certified Public Accountants' (AICPA) opinions. At the bottom are FASB staff questions and answers and AICPA interpretations. Accountants are directed that they should first consult sources at the top of the hierarchy and then proceed downward only if there is no relevant pronouncement at a higher level.

  1. Other Comprehensive Basis of Accounting ...

    Financial statements prepared using a system of accounting that ...
  2. Non-GAAP Earnings

    An alternative earnings measure of the performance of a company. ...
  3. Generally Accepted Auditing Standards ...

    A set of systematic guidelines used by auditors when conducting ...
  4. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles ...

    The common set of accounting principles, standards and procedures ...
  5. International Accounting Standards ...

    An older set of standards stating how particular types of transactions ...
  6. Certified Public Accountant - CPA

    A designation given by the American Institute of Certified Public ...
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