Summary of Statement No. 125

Accounting for Transfers and Servicing of Financial Assets and Extinguishments of Liabilities (Issued 6/96)


This Statement provides accounting and reporting standards for transfers and servicing of financial assets and extinguishments of liabilities. Those standards are based on consistent application of a financial-components approach that focuses on control. Under that approach, after a transfer of financial assets, an entity recognizes the financial and servicing assets it controls and the liabilities it has incurred, derecognizes financial assets when control has been surrendered, and derecognizes liabilities when extinguished. This Statement provides consistent standards for distinguishing transfers of financial assets that are sales from transfers that are secured borrowings.

A transfer of financial assets in which the transferor surrenders control over those assets is accounted for as a sale to the extent that consideration other than beneficial interests in the transferred assets is received in exchange. The transferor has surrendered control over transferred assets if and only if all of the following conditions are met:

  1. The transferred assets have been isolated from the transferor—put presumptively beyond the reach of the transferor and its creditors, even in bankruptcy or other receivership.
  2. Either (1) each transferee obtains the right—free of conditions that constrain it from taking advantage of that right—to pledge or exchange the transferred assets or (2) the transferee is a qualifying special-purpose entity and the holders of beneficial interests in that entity have the right—free of conditions that constrain them from taking advantage of that right—to pledge or exchange those interests.
  3. The transferor does not maintain effective control over the transferred assets through (1) an agreement that both entitles and obligates the transferor to repurchase or redeem them before their maturity or (2) an agreement that entitles the transferor to repurchase or redeem transferred assets that are not readily obtainable.

This Statement requires that liabilities and derivatives incurred or obtained by transferors as part of a transfer of financial assets be initially measured at fair value, if practicable. It also requires that servicing assets and other retained interests in the transferred assets be measured by allocating the previous carrying amount between the assets sold, if any, and retained interests, if any, based on their relative fair values at the date of the transfer.

This Statement requires that servicing assets and liabilities be subsequently measured by (a) amortization in proportion to and over the period of estimated net servicing income or loss and (b) assessment for asset impairment or increased obligation based on their fair values.

This Statement requires that debtors reclassify financial assets pledged as collateral and that secured parties recognize those assets and their obligation to return them in certain circumstances in which the secured party has taken control of those assets.

This Statement requires that a liability be derecognized if and only if either (a) the debtor pays the creditor and is relieved of its obligation for the liability or (b) the debtor is legally released from being the primary obligor under the liability either judicially or by the creditor. Therefore, a liability is not considered extinguished by an in-substance defeasance.

This Statement provides implementation guidance for assessing isolation of transferred assets and for accounting for transfers of partial interests, servicing of financial assets, securitizations, transfers of sales-type and direct financing lease receivables, securities lending transactions, repurchase agreements including "dollar rolls," "wash sales," loan syndications and participations, risk participations in banker's acceptances, factoring arrangements, transfers of receivables with recourse, and extinguishments of liabilities.

This Statement supersedes FASB Statements No. 76, Extinguishment of Debt, and No. 77, Reporting by Transferors for Transfers of Receivables with Recourse. This Statement amends FASB Statement No. 115, Accounting for Certain Investments in Debt and Equity Securities, to clarify that a debt security may not be classified as held-to-maturity if it can be prepaid or otherwise settled in such a way that the holder of the security would not recover substantially all of its recorded investment. This Statement amends and extends to all servicing assets and liabilities the accounting standards for mortgage servicing rights now in FASB Statement No. 65, Accounting for Certain Mortgage Banking Activities, and supersedes FASB Statement No. 122, Accounting for Mortgage Servicing Rights. This Statement also supersedes Technical Bulletins No. 84-4, In-Substance Defeasance of Debt, No. 85-2, Accounting for Collateralized Mortgage Obligations (CMOs), and No. 87-3, Accounting for Mortgage Servicing Fees and Rights.

This Statement is effective for transfers and servicing of financial assets and extinguishments of liabilities occurring after December 31, 1996, and is to be applied prospectively. Earlier or retroactive application is not permitted.