IAS 7, titled “Statement of Cash Flows,” is an important International Accounting Standard that provides guidelines for the presentation of cash flow information. This standard is crucial for accounting and finance professionals for several reasons:

  1. Purpose of IAS 7: IAS 7 aims to provide a framework for presenting a statement of cash flows which is integral to understanding a company’s liquidity and solvency. This statement offers a detailed breakdown of the company’s cash inflows and outflows.


  1. Components of Cash Flow Statement: The cash flow statement, as per IAS 7, is divided into three main sections:

Operating Activities: This section includes cash flows directly related to the primary revenue-producing activities of the company. It often includes cash received from customers, cash paid to suppliers and employees, etc.

Investing Activities: These are cash flows related to the acquisition and disposal of long-term assets and other investments not included in cash equivalents. Examples include payments for property and equipment or proceeds from selling investments.

Financing Activities: This section includes cash flows related to activities that result in changes in the size and composition of the equity capital and borrowings of the entity. Examples are proceeds from issuing shares or paying dividends.


  1. Direct vs. Indirect Method: IAS 7 allows the preparation of the cash flow statement using either the direct or indirect method. The direct method presents major classes of gross cash receipts and payments, while the indirect method adjusts net profit or loss for the effects of non-cash transactions, any deferrals or accruals of past or future operating cash receipts or payments, and items of income or expense associated with investing or financing cash flows.


  1. Importance for Stakeholders: The statement of cash flows helps stakeholders assess the entity’s ability to generate cash and cash equivalents and enables them to develop models to assess and compare the present value of future cash flows of different entities.


  1. Compliance and Transparency: Adherence to IAS 7 ensures a standardized format for presenting cash flows, aiding in the comparability and transparency of financial statements across different companies and jurisdictions.


  1. Analytical Use: For finance professionals, the statement of cash flows is a tool for assessing a company’s financial health. Analysis of cash flows can reveal trends in operational efficiency, investment decisions, and financing strategies.

Understanding and effectively applying IAS 7 is essential for professionals in accounting and finance. It not only aids in compliance and reporting but also provides a comprehensive view of a company’s financial health, influencing decision-making and strategic planning.

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