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Bilanzwirksamkeit und -unwirksamkeit von Leasingverhältnissen aus Sicht der empirischen Forschung

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Zusammenfassung

Der vorliegende Beitrag zeigt Entwicklung und Stand der empirischen Forschung zur Frage der Bilanzwirksamkeit und -unwirksamkeit von Leasingverhältnissen auf und untersucht die Konsequenzen für die gegenwärtig diskutierte Reform der IFRS- und US-GAAP-Leasingbilanzierung. Die Forschung vermag zu zeigen, dass sich bilanzunwirksame Leasingverhältnisse (Operating Leasing) gerade in leasingintensiven Branchen erheblich auf die wirtschaftliche Lage der Leasingnehmer auswirken. Substitutions- und Kapitalstruktureffekte bei Einführung der teilweisen Bilanzwirksamkeit (Finanzierungsleasing) in den 1970er und 1980er Jahren lassen erkennen, dass die Leasingnehmer die bilanzunwirksame Behandlung präferieren. Wahrnehmungsunterschiede zwischen Operating Leasing und Finanzierungsleasing können auf Adressatenseite belegt werden. Allerdings gibt es auch Anzeichen dafür, dass sich diese Unterschiede mit dem zunehmenden Grad der Professionalisierung auf Adressatenseite nivellieren und dass Märkte durch das Operating Leasing nicht per se fehlgeleitet werden. Vor diesem Hintergrund erscheint die gegenwärtige Leasingbilanzreform zumindest nicht zwingend.

Abstract

This paper presents the development and status of empirical research on the question of on- versus off-balance-sheet accounting for leases and examines the implications for the currently debated reform of IFRS and US-GAAP lease-accounting. Research findings show that off-balance-sheet leases (operating leases) affect the economic situation of lessees substantially, especially in lease-intensive industries. Substitution and capital structure effects, especially during the introduction of partial on-balance-sheet accounting for (finance) leases in the 1970s and 1980s, indicate that lessees prefer the off-balance-sheet treatment. Studies addressing the main users of financial statements also demonstrate a differentiated perception of operating and finance leases. However, these differences seem to vanish if users are more professional. So, markets’ perception is not distorted by operating leases per se and there seems to be no sufficiently compelling case for the current lease accounting reform.

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Abb. 1
Abb. 2

Notes

  1. 1.

    Diese Annahme ist wegen fehlender Informationen üblich; Sensitivitätsanalysen für eine Annahmevariation von z.B. +/-10 % greifen i.d.R. nicht die für ein Vertragsportfolio unwahrscheinlichen Extreme ab (Anfang oder Ende der Laufzeit), an denen die Folgebewertung der Leasingpositionen noch bzw. wieder fast übereinstimmt (m.w.N. Fülbier et al. 2008, S. 130).

  2. 2.

    Streng genommen verbleiben trotz der Anhangangaben Informationsdefizite auch bei halbstrenger Informationseffizienz, so dass die in Abschn. 2 vorgestellten Simulationsstudien mit Annahmen z.B. über die künftige Zahlungsstromverteilung, den Zins- oder Steuersatz arbeiten müssen.

  3. 3.

    Die Definition bilanzwirksamer Leasingverhältnisse der Ausgangsstudie (Gritta 1974) differiert allerdings von der des späteren SFAS 13; vgl. Gritta et al. (1994, S. 191–193); Vancil (1963, S. 8). Ähnliche Quoten ermitteln z.B. auch Gosman und Hanson (2000).

  4. 4.

    Ashton (1985) stellt i.d.Zhg. zwar keine signifikanten Veränderungen fest, dürfte allerdings unter einem sample selection bias leiden, weil nur 23 leasingintensive Unternehmen ausgewählt werden, die SSAP 21 vor dessen verpflichtendem Anwendungszeitpunkt bereits freiwillig berücksichtigt haben; vgl. zu dieser Einschätzung bereits Beattie et al. (2006, S. 81).

  5. 5.

    Allerdings stellt Abdel-khalik (1981, S. 163–192) vergleichender Unternehmensanleihen-Bewertung von Emittenten mit hoher bzw. geringer Leasingintensität über den Zeitraum der Einführung von SFAS 13 hinweg (1975 bis 1979) keine signifikanten Bewertungsunterschiede fest; vgl. ähnlich zur Relevanz bilanz(un)wirksamer Laufzeitoptionen Hales et al. (2012).

  6. 6.

    ASR 147 ist 1973 von der SEC verabschiedet worden, um die bis dato in APB Opinion No. 31 existierenden Angaben zu Leasing auszuweiten (insb. Angabe des Barwerts der Mindestleasingzahlungen, die für Finanzierungsleasingverhältnisse entstanden wären). Als Finanzierungsleasing galt hiernach ein Leasingvertrag u.a. mit einer Laufzeit von mind. 75 % der Nutzungsdauer des Leasinggegenstands; vgl. auch Lipe (2001, S. 301). Finanzierungsleasingverhältnisse waren nicht bilanzierungspflichtig; nur das als Ratenkauf klassifizierte Leasing gem. APB Opinion No. 5 war damals bilanzwirksam.

  7. 7.

    Diese Ergebnisse werden durch Nachfolgestudien für andere Länder und die dortige Einführung neuer Leasingbilanzregeln bestätigt; vgl. z.B. Garrod (1989) für UK und Sakai (2010) für Japan.

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Danksagung

Die Autoren danken zwei anonymen Gutachtern, dem Herausgeber sowie Teilnehmern des 29. und 33. EAA-Kongresses in Dublin 2006 bzw. Istanbul 2010 und des Humboldt Accounting Day 2011 für wertvolle Hinweise.

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Correspondence to Rolf Uwe Fülbier.

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Fülbier, R.U., Fehr, J. Bilanzwirksamkeit und -unwirksamkeit von Leasingverhältnissen aus Sicht der empirischen Forschung. J Betriebswirtsch 63, 207–242 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11301-013-0095-z

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Schlüsselwörter

  • Leasing
  • Operating Leasing
  • Leasingbilanzierung
  • Off-balance sheet approach
  • Right-of-use approach
  • IFRS
  • US-GAAP
  • Constructive capitalization
  • IAS 17

JEL Klassifikationen

  • M 41
  • G 32

Keywords

  • Leases
  • Operating lease
  • Lease accounting
  • Off-balance sheet approach
  • Right-of-use approach
  • IFRS
  • US-GAAP
  • Constructive capitalization
  • IAS 17