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Fair value reporting, long a contentious issue, has become even more controversial now that most companies are required to value illiquid assets at market prices and record them on the balance sheet. The implementation of FAS 157 in the first quarter, coinciding as it did with the lingering effects of the credit crisis, prompted both Standard & Poor’s and the International Institute of Finance (IIF) to recommend changes that, at the very least, would lead to clearer guidance and, at most, would relax or suspend the rules.

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