- 32. Accounting policies
- 33. Fixed asset investments
- 34. Debtors
- 35. Creditors: amounts falling due within one year
- 36. Equity share owners’ funds
- 37. Guarantees and other financial commitments
32. Accounting policies
The principal accounting policies of WPP plc (the Company) are summarised below. These accounting policies have all been applied consistently throughout the period.
a) Basis of accounting
The financial statements are prepared under the historical cost convention and in accordance with applicable UK accounting standards and the Companies (Jersey) Law 1991.
b) Translation of foreign currency
Foreign currency transactions arising from operating activities are translated from local currency into pounds sterling at the exchange rates prevailing at the date of the transaction. Monetary assets and liabilities denominated in foreign currencies at the period end are translated at the period-end exchange rate. Foreign currency gains or losses are credited or charged to the profit and loss account as they arise.
Fixed asset investments are stated at cost less provision for impairment.
Current tax is provided at amounts expected to be paid (or recovered) using the tax rates and laws that have been enacted or substantially enacted by the balance sheet date.
Deferred taxation is provided in full on timing differences that result in an obligation at the balance sheet date to pay more tax, or a right to pay less tax, at a future date, at rates expected to apply when they crystallise based on current tax rates and law. Timing differences arise from the inclusion of items of income and expenditure in taxation computations in periods different from those in which they are included in financial statements. Deferred tax assets and liabilities are not discounted.
e) UITF 44: Group and treasury share transactions
Where a parent entity grants rights to its equity instruments to employees of a subsidiary, and such share-based compensation is accounted for as equity-settled in the consolidated financial statements of the parent, UITF 44 requires the subsidiary to record an expense for such compensation in accordance with FRS 20 (Share-based payments), with a corresponding increase recognised in equity as a contribution from the parent. Consequently, in the financial statements of the parent (WPP plc), the Company has recognised an addition to fixed asset investments of the aggregate amount of these contributions of £7.2 million in 2008, with a credit to equity for the same amount.