Global Standards for the world economy

Friday 20 January 2017

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IFRS use around the world

How many listed companies use IFRS Standards globally?


This page provides a reasonable—though not 100 per cent precise—answer to that question by combining (a) information on the use of IFRS Standards that is in the jurisdiction profiles on the IFRS Foundation’s website and (b) information about the numbers of listed companies published on the websites of the two major global associations of securities exchanges. The two organisations are:

The following data is as of November 2016 (for a few exchanges the WFE or FEAS data is for an earlier month in 2016):

Number of member and affiliate exchanges Number of domestic listed companies Number of foreign listed companies
World Federation of Exchange (WFE) 81 48,482 3,068
Federation of European and Asian Stock Exchanges (FEAS) -
includes only those
exchanges and
companies not also
members of or listed on
WFE exchanges
9 1,408 0
Totals 90 49,890 3,068

 

The tables below categorise those 49,890 domestic listed companies and 3,068 foreign listed companies as to whether they use IFRS Standards. Developing the tables required some assumptions, which are set out after the tables. We believe that the margin for error due to those assumptions is small and does not materially affect the IFRS adoption picture presented on this web page.

Reasonable overall observations based on the data in the tables below are that:

  • More than 28,000 of the approximately 50,000 domestic listed companies on the 90 major securities exchanges in the world use IFRS Standards. And of those domestic listed companies that do not use IFRS Standards, nearly 90 per cent are listed in China, India, Japan, and the United States.
  • Of the approximately 3,000 foreign listed companies on the 90 major securities exchanges, we are aware of more than 1,000 of those companies using IFRS Standards. We are working to develop better data on the other cross-border listings.

Table 1 shows the financial reporting frameworks used by domestic listed companies on the WFE and FEAS exchanges:

 

Table 1 Domestic Listed Companies

DOMESTIC LISTED COMPANIES NOVEMBER 2016
Number of member exchanges Number of domestic listed companies IFRS Standards required for all or most companies IFRS Standards permitted or required for at least some (but not all or most) companies IFRS Standards neither required nor permitted for any companies —use local standards Accounting framework unknown— no profile
World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) 81 48,482 26,848 4,285 * 17,134 215
Federation of European and Asian Stock Exchanges (FEAS) - 
includes only those exchanges 
and companies not also members of or listed on 
WFE exchanges
9 1,408 1,348 0 0 60
Totals 90 49,980 28,196 4,285 17,134 ** 275

* Of these, 141 Japanese companies and 116 Swiss companies use IFRS Standards.

** Of the 17,134 companies, 15,006 (88 per cent) are listed in China, India, and the United States. 



Table 2 Domestic Listed Companies Adjusted for Japan and Switzerland

Among the 90 WFE and FEAS exchanges, the use of IFRS Standards by domestic listed companies is an option, rather than a requirement, in Bermuda, Japan and Switzerland. Table 2 adjusts the data in Table 1 to count as IFRS users the domestic companies in Japan and Switzerland that use IFRS Standards. Currently, we do not have similar data for Bermuda. Because there are only 13 domestic listed companies in Bermuda, we believe Table 2 presents an accurate picture of the use of IFRS Standards by domestic companies on the world’s largest securities exchanges:

DOMESTIC LISTED COMPANIES NOVEMBER 2016
Number of member exchanges Number of domestic listed companies Number of companies using IFRS Standards (IFRSStandards required plus permitted and actually used) Number of companies not using IFRS Standards Number of companies accounting framework unknown—no profile
World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) 81 48,482 27,105 21,162 215
Federation of European and Asian Stock Exchanges (FEAS) - includes only those exchanges and companies not also members of or listed on WFE exchanges 9 1,408 1,348 0 60
Totals 90 49,890 28,453 21,162* 275
Per cent 100% 57.0% 42.4% 0.5%

* Of these, 18,390 (87 per cent) are listed in China, India, Japan and the United States.

 
Table 3 Foreign Listed Companies

Table 3 shows the financial reporting frameworks used by foreign listed companies (ie cross-border listings) on the 90 WFE and FEAS exchanges:

FOREIGN LISTED COMPANIES NOVEMBER 2016
Number of member exchanges Number of foreign listed companies IFRS Standards required for all or most companies IFRS Standards permitted or required for at least some (but not all or most) companies IFRS Standards neither required nor permitted for any companies —use local standards Accounting framework unknown—no profile
World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) 81 3,068 257 2,795 * 5 11
Federation of European and Asian Stock Exchanges (FEAS) - includes only those exchanges and companies not also members of or listed on WFE exchanges 9 0 0 0 0 0
Totals 90 3,068 257 2,795 5 11

* We are aware that approximately 500 of these companies are users of IFRS Standards whose securities trade in the United States, and another 250 companies are mainland China companies that use IFRS Standards for listings in Hong Kong. Adding these 750 companies to the 257 foreign listed companies known to be using IFRS Standards brings the total foreign listed companies known to be using IFRS Standards to over 1,000.



Assumptions and other comments

 

The jurisdiction profiles group the jurisdictions as to their use of IFRS Standards into three categories, as follows:

  • IFRS Standards required for all or most domestic listed companies.
  • IFRS Standards permitted or required for at least some (but not all or most) domestic listed companies.
  • IFRS Standards neither required nor permitted for any domestic listed companies – companies must use local standards.

Our profiles have similar categories for foreign listed companies.

Both the WFE and FEAS report separately, for each securities exchange, (a) the number of domestic listed companies and (b) the number of foreign listed companies. Some jurisdictions have different accounting requirements for domestic and foreign listed companies.

Four of the WFE jurisdictions (Argentina, Israel, Mexico, and Peru) require IFRS Standards for all listed companies other than financial institutions. The number of financial institutions is small relative to the number of non-financial listed companies, but we do not currently have the data to remove the financial institutions from the total IFRS count.

Most jurisdictions that require IFRS Standards for domestic companies permit (rather than require) foreign listed companies to use IFRS Standards, allowing their home accounting standards or some other financial reporting framework as an alternative. For those jurisdictions, we have accurate data for the number of domestic listed companies using IFRS Standards but not for the number of foreign listed companies using IFRS Standards because we do not know which financial reporting framework the foreign listed companies have chosen. However, the number of foreign listed companies tends to be relatively small in most jurisdictions.

Many jurisdictions have small securities exchanges that are not members of the WFE or FEAS. The data in the tables above reflect only the number of companies listed on WFE and FEAS member and affiliate exchanges. Companies listed on many of the small exchanges also use IFRS Standards, but they are not included in the tables above.

We have not yet developed IFRS profiles for several of the jurisdictions whose exchanges are members of WFE or FEAS, so they are not included in our tabulations. Those jurisdictions are:

  • World Federation of Exchanges. We do not have a profile for Cote d’Ivoire, Lebanon, Morocco, Papua New Guinea, Seychelles, or Tunisia. A total of 215 domestic and 5 foreign companies are listed in those jurisdictions. 
  • Federation of European and Asian Stock Exchanges. We do not have a profile for Montenegro, where 60 domestic companies are listed.

This page was last updated 12 December 2016.

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